The full programme is available for this year’s festival, 25 May to 4 June. We very much look forward to seeing you in May.
Wake up and re-energise with our morning yoga class. Iyengar yoga is characterized by precision, alignment and attention to detail and is an inclusive and accessible yoga practice. Mats are provided, wear comfortable clothing.
Cathedrals are custodians of culture and of the rituals of civic life. They offer welfare and relieve suffering. They uplift spirits with their beauty. In a real sense they are still what they were when first built a millennium ago, a glimpse of the sublime. Illustrated lecture.
Responding to today’s international challenges in a rapidly evolving geopolitical environment is placing new strain on the UK’s place in the world. The historian and constitutional expert assesses the challenges the UK faces in the coming years, discussing the impact of withdrawal from the EU and turning into a ‘Global Britain’ may have on the our foreign policy, security and territorial integrity.
Death affects us all. Yet it is still the last taboo in our society and grief is still profoundly misunderstood. Two writers, whose outstanding books offer compassion and solace, discuss ways to live on. Samuel is a grief psychotherapist and author of Grief Works: Stories of Life, Death and Surviving. Rentzenbrink is the author of The Last Act of Love and now A Manual for Heartache.
Ridley views the Peter Pan stories through the eyes of a neuroscientist and explores J M Barrie's interest in cognition, theory of mind and the nature of consciousness. Barrie's stories are rich in post-Darwinian questions about the origins of human nature and the mental abilities of animals, children and adults. Ridley was Head of the Medical Research Council Comparative Cognition Research Team in the Department of Psychology at Cambridge University.
Brexit, then Trump, exposed how out of touch political and corporate leaders are with the deep concerns of voters and consumers. The gap is widening. The challenges for leaders in governments and boardrooms are deepening, fuelled by AI, the threat to jobs and algorithms. Can leaders handle pressures they never expected? A participatory symposium led by Gowing, co-author of the ongoing Thinking the Unthinkable study. Numbers limited.
Writer and comedian Jonathan Meres provides a laugh-out-loud treat as he talks about the twelfth and final instalment in his multi-award-winning series. Although life is undoubtedly still unfair for Norm, Jonathan guarantees that he will cheer up the audience and get everyone singing along to his World of Norm song.
Join the Maisy Mouse creator Lucy Cousins and storyteller Liz Fost for an event of feathered fun as they bring A Busy Day for Birds to life in a storytelling and live illustration event.
Do space and time truly exist? What is reality made of? Can we understand its deep texture? Taking us on a wondrous journey, Rovelli invites us to imagine a whole new world where black holes are waiting to explode, space time is made up of grains and infinity does not exist: a vast universe still largely undiscovered.
‘The man who makes physics sexy. The new Hawking. His writing is luminous.’ – The Times. Chaired by Marcus du Sautoy.
Writing in the immediate aftermath of her decision to stop IVF treatment, Leigh lays bare the truths of her experience: the highs of hope and the depths of disappointment, the grip of yearning and desire, the toll on her relationships and the unexpected graces and moments of black humour. She navigates the science of IVF, copes with the impact of treatment and reconciles the seductive promises of the worldwide multi-billion dollar IVF industry with the reality.
In April 1917, the exiled leader of the Bolsheviks, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, travelled back to Russia by train. His country was at war and his route would take him through enemy territory; the plan was controversial from the start. The destination was the Finland Station and the first steps on the road to Soviet power. Merridale, the great Russia scholar, follows in the leader's tracks, creating a gripping account of events in Russia and Europe at one of the tensest moments of the First World War. Chaired by Peter Hennessy.
A new tale of ageing, lust, helplessness and deception told with the trademark black humour of one of the great British novelists whose films and books include The Buddha of Suburbia, Venus, The Mother and My Beautiful Launderette. Kureishi is one of the wisest and most humane writers with an acute eye for vulnerabilities and quiet desperation.
Martinez brings together a torrent of mind-expanding ideas, facts and arguments to dismantle sacred myths central to our society - myths about free will, free markets, free media and free elections. From the lottery of our birth to the consent-manufacturing influence of concentrated wealth and power, this far-reaching manifesto lifts the veil on the mechanisms of control that pervade our lives.
The hairiest family in Teddington are back for a further adventure and this time they decide to take a well-earned holiday by the seaside with all their relatives in tow. But can they stay hidden on a camping holiday? Join the authors as they introduce their exceptional family’s latest escapade in storytelling and live drawing.
Ex-robbers now bakers, Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam star in a new collection of stories about their comical adventures. The two dogs are best friends but they look like being in danger of falling out when a tempting looking package arrives at the café. Corderoy and Lenton entertain with comic rhymes and illustrations about their well-loved characters.
Book a seat in the Relish Festival Restaurant and receive a complimentary drink on us.
Enjoy a delicious meal from our Festival Restaurant buffet. Choose from a wide selection of hot and cold dishes created fresh onsite by our team of chefs using the best local seasonal produce.
Come up to the buffet and choose as much as like from all the dishes on offer for just £20, by booking online you will received a complimentary glass of wine, bottle of beer or soft drink. By booking online you will guarantee your seat in the restaurant where our team will be waiting to give you a warm welcome.
Alex Gooch breads and water are free for every customer.
A selection of desserts and local cheeses from Neil's Yard Creamery are also available to buy, as well as a full bar and baristas coffees.
See a Sample Menu Here
The first comprehensive and authoritative history of the Koh-i Noor, arguably the most celebrated and mythologised jewel in the world, from the internationally acclaimed and bestselling historians.
The great Arsenal and England defender explains the struggles he’s faced to stay sober for 20 years and why he set up Sporting Chance, the charity which provides treatment and support for sports stars suffering from addictions. He gives his incisive thoughts on England’s continued failings in major tournaments and assesses why Arsenal has struggled to repeat the title-winning formula of his own time there.
Boyne’s new novel spans 80 years of Irish history. At the mercy of fortune and coincidence, Cyril Avery will spend a lifetime coming to know himself and where he came from – and over his three score years and ten, will struggle to discover an identity, a home and a country. Boyne is the author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and The Absolutist. He talks to Peter Florence.
The networking expert and entrepreneur takes us on a journey ‘from Telex to Twitter’ to illustrate how the answer to the Age of Overload can come from devising management-based systems which are both highly practical and intuitive; and which draw inspiration from the huge advances the world has made in tackling other kinds of health and mental wellbeing. She talks to Amol Rajan, the BBC’s media editor.
The multi award-winning journalist and novelist conducts an exacting examination of identity, secrecy and the relationship between the individual, the state and technology in his new book The Secret Life: Three True Stories.