The multi-award-winning teen innovator and scientist overcame the skepticism of the academic world, depression and homophobic bullying to invent, at the age of 15, an early-detection test for pancreatic, ovarian, and lung cancers. It has the potential to be over four hundred times more effective than the medical standard and it costs only 5p per use. Chaired by Alice Key.
Photo: Mark Tucker
Liberated from the death camps of Auschwitz at the age of eleven, in adulthood Buergenthal became a judge at the International Court in The Hague, investigating modern day genocides. He returns to the festival with a new postscript to his memoir.
Franz Schubert’s Winterreise is one of the most powerful and enigmatic masterpieces in Western culture. One of the work’s finest interpreters, Bostridge, focuses on the context, resonance and personal significance of a work that is possibly the greatest landmark in the history of Lieder. He unpicks the enigmas and subtle meaning of each of the twenty-four songs to explore for us the world Schubert inhabited, bringing the work and its world alive for connoisseurs and new listeners alike.
Set in 1960s Ireland, Tóibín’s new novel Nora Webster introduces one of the most complex and captivating heroines of contemporary fiction. He discusses the book and his new study On Elizabeth Bishop. He creates a vivid picture of the American poet while also revealing how her work has helped shape his sensibility as a novelist and how her experiences of loss and exile resonate with his own.
Photo: Brigitte Lacombe
‘I have discovered a truly marvellous proof, which this margin is too narrow to contain…’ Twenty years after a mild-mannered Englishman solved Pierre de Fermat’s 350-year-old theorem, Singh tells the true story of how mathematics’ most challenging problem was made to yield its secrets in a thrilling tale of endurance, ingenuity and inspiration.
John Aubrey loved England. From an early age, he saw his England slipping away and, against extraordinary odds, committed himself to preserving for posterity what remained of it – in books, monuments and life stories. His Brief Lives would redefine the art of biography yet he published only one rushed, botched book in his lifetime and died fearing his name and achievements would be forgotten.
Scurr’s biography is an act of scholarly imagination: a diary drawn from John Aubrey’s own words, displaying his unique voice, dry wit, the irreverence and drama of a literary pioneer. Aubrey saw himself modestly as a collector of a vanishing past, a ‘scurvy antiquary’. But he was also one of the pioneers of modern writing, a journalist before the age of journalism, who witnessed the Civil War and the Great Fire of London in the company of some of the influential men and women, high and low, whose lives he would make his legacy.
On 2 August 1947 a young man gets off a train in a small Swedish town to begin his life anew. Having survived the ghetto of Lodz, the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau, and the harrowing slave camps and transports during the final months of Nazi Germany, his final challenge is to survive the survival. In his intelligent and deeply moving book, Rosenberg returns to his own childhood in order to tell the story of his father; walking at his side, holding his hand, trying to get close to him again. It is also the story of the chasm that soon opens between the world of the child, permeated by the optimism, progress and collective oblivion of postwar Sweden, and the world of the father, darkened by the long shadows of the past.
A celebration of reading and books from the comedian, broadcaster and writer whose books include the novels Hitler’s Canary, Flying Under Bridges and Valentine Grey, children’s stories The Littlest Viking and The Troublesome Tooth Fairy, non-fiction best-sellers Peas & Queues and Girls Are Best and the play Bully Boy. Introduced by Sue Wilkinson.
Ninety-three-year-old Eileen Younghusband served as an officer in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force in WW2. She decided to volunteer at the age of 18, and her mathematical abilities led to her training as a Clerk Special Duties, a vital part of the Radar chain. She found herself working in the Filter Room, the lynchpin between the coastal Radar Chain and the successful defence of Britain. She tracked the V1s over Kent and London and gave the first ‘Big Ben’ warning of a V2, which landed on Chiswick on 8 September 1944. After losing two fiancés, she eventually married; only to be posted overseas six weeks later to Second Tactical Air Force in Belgium. There she became part of a team tracking and destroying V2 launching vehicles, responsible for the devastating raids on Antwerp – the Allies’ vital port for landing troops and supplies. She tells her story to The Telegraph’s Martin Chilton.
Retail and brand communication guru Mary Portas discusses her recently released memoir, Shop Girl, and shares her memories of growing up in Watford in the 70s and her first steps into the world of retail at Harvey Nichols and Harrods in the early 80s.
Born into a large Irish family, Mary’s childhood is full of love, laughter, fun and mischief. However when Mary is 16 tragedy strikes and her world is blown apart. New responsibilities at home mean her ambitions to act are pushed to one side. But things play out unexpectedly: after vowing she doesn’t want to work in a shop for the rest of her life Mary takes to the camp and glamour of dressing displays in Harvey Nichols and Harrods like a duck to water, and Mary, Queen of Shops is born.
She talks to Gaby Wood, the Telegraph’s Head of Books.
Bernard Hinault is one of the greatest cyclists of all time. He is a five-time winner of the Tour de France and the only man to have won each of the Grand Tours on more than one occasion. Hinault is the last ‘old-school’ champion: a larger-than-life character from a working-class background, capable of winning on all terrains, in major Tours and one-day Classics. Nicknamed ‘The Badger’ for his combative style, he led a cyclists’ strike in his first Tour and instigated a legendary punch-up with demonstrators in 1982 while in the middle of a race. Hinault’s battles with teammates Laurent Fignon and Greg LeMond provide some of the greatest moments in Tour history.
Sports writer and journalist William Fotheringham is the Guardian's cycling correspondent and author of a number of books about the cycling world, including the number one bestseller Merckx: Half Man Half Bike and biographies of Fausto Coppi and Tom Simpson.
Please click here to prebook lunch at Relish Restaurant on site.
Celebrating the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Beer sets the Alice books in a number of different contexts in the Victorian period – what was going on in Punch, in maths, in language theory, in evolutionary theory, in child development – and asks how the books both thrive on these presences and wriggle free of them. Beer is also the editor of Carroll’s poems Jabberwocky and Other Nonsense.
The award-winning novelist, author of Restoration, The Road Home, Music and Silence, and The Colour, awakens the senses in this diverse collection of short stories. In her precise yet sensuous style she lays bare the soul of her characters– the admirable, the embarrassing, the unfulfilled, the sexy and the adorable – to uncover a dazzling range of human emotions and desires. She reads, and talks to Peter Florence.
Please click here to prebook lunch/dinner at Relish Restaurant on site
Tallis is inspired by EM Forster’s thought that ‘Death destroys a man but the idea of it saves him’. He looks back on his world from the standpoint of his future corpse. He reflects on the senses that opened up his late world, the elements they reveal, the distances, divisions and intimacies of space, the multifarious activities that occupied his days; his possessions, his utterances, his relationship to others, the extinguished flame that was his self, his journey towards the end, and his afterlife either side of the grave.
Please click here to prebook lunch at Relish Restaurant on site
A beautifully weighted memoir of political success and failure from the son of an Earl, who after Eton and Oxford found himself in cabinet and at the heart of Margaret Thatcher’s government. Just as his star was in the ascent, Waldegrave became embroiled in a scandal that tarnished his reputation but could not dampen his voracious enthusiasm for the political game.
The rock-star mathematician takes us on a mesmerising journey as he wrestles with a new theorem that will win him the most coveted prize in mathematics. Along the way he encounters obstacles and setbacks, losses of faith and even brushes with madness. His story is one of courage and partnership, doubt and anxiety, elation and despair. Blending science with history, biography with myth, he conjures up an inimitable cast of characters including the omnipresent Einstein, mad genius Kurt Gödel, and Villani’s personal hero, John Nash. Chaired by Marcus du Sautoy.
There are moments in our lives, and throughout the year, when we come together with our friends and family, and food plays a huge part in turning these moments into something special. Traditionally, many of these occasions call for meat – whether it’s roast beef for Sunday lunch, or burgers at a BBQ – but Mary wants to show us that vegetarian cooking can be just as celebratory and special.
* The Relish Festival Restaurant will be serving a vegetarian feast from the cookbook from 8.30pm. To book call Relish on 01285 658 444.
Gareth Thomas had it all. He was a national hero, a sporting icon. He was a leader of men, captain of Wales and the British Lions. To him, rugby was an expression of cultural identity, a sacred code. It was no mere ball game. It gave him everything, except the freedom to be himself. This is the story of a man with a secret that was slowly killing him. Something he feared might devastate not only his own life but the lives of his wife, family, friends and teammates. His fear that telling the truth about his sexuality would lose him everything he loved almost sent him over the edge. The deceit ended when Gareth became the world’s most prominent athlete to come out as a gay man. His gesture has strengthened strangers, and given him a fresh perspective.
In November 1596 a woman signed a document which would nearly destroy the career of William Shakespeare… Who was the woman who played such an instrumental, yet little known, role in Shakespeare’s life? Never far from controversy when she was alive – she sparked numerous riots and indulged in acts of bribery, breaking-and-entering, and kidnapping – Elizabeth Russell has been edited out of public memory, yet the chain of events she set in motion would be the making of Shakespeare as we all know him today.
The novelist discusses his wartime childhood, his early married life and academic career, and the development of his fiction – all of which he explores in his memoir, which covers the years up to the publication of Changing Places.
Waterloo was the climactic showdown between the military giants of the age, Napoleon and Wellington, who faced each other for the first and only time across the sodden rolling Belgian farmland south of Brussels on the morning of Sunday 18 June 1815. More than 150,000 French, British, Dutch and Prussian soldiers fought an epic, bloody and decisive encounter that ended the Napoleonic Wars and led to Bonaparte’s final abdication and decades of international peace in Europe.
Peter and Dan Snow tell the story of Napoleon’s 100 Days Campaign, from his Elba escape to his defeat at Waterloo. Their book, The Battle of Waterloo Experience, provides what no other book on the battle contains – removable facsimiles of historic archival documents. You can relive this extraordinary moment in history by holding and examining rare or previously unpublished sketch maps, letters, orders, official papers and proclamations which up until now have been filed away in the National Army Museum’s collections or in other archives and museums around Europe.
Get close to the action by reading the campaign journal of a colonel of Hussars, the Duke of Wellington’s handwritten orders to the commander defending the farm of Hougoumont, the poignant letters written to family and loved ones by officers and men shortly after the battle, the paybook of a soldier of Napoleon’s Imperial Guard, and The Times of 22 June 1815, containing a complete transcript of Wellington’s renowned Waterloo Dispatch.
The prolific and inspiring creator of game-changing books, comics, films and songs talks about his work. His latest book is Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances.