Cliveden Literary Festival

the political and literary salon for the 21st century, returns for its second year

In 2017, Cliveden House’s long tradition as a political and literary salon was revived with the launch of the Cliveden Literary Festival. This autumn, the festival returns for its second year on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 September 2018.

The festival takes place at Cliveden House, which sits above the Thames in Buckinghamshire, surrounded by 376 acres of National Trust grounds. In the course of its 350 year history, Cliveden has frequently been a setting for political machinations, romantic intrigues, and intellectual debates. The list of luminaries to have stayed there includes poets and film stars, conservatives and communists, satirists and Prime Ministers. Cliveden has hosted every monarch since Charles II, and recently the house’s longstanding connection with the royal family was the subject of international interest when the Duchess of Sussex chose to stay there on the eve of her wedding.

The 2018 programme features: writers and historians Tina Brown, Helen Castor, Sir Harry Evans, Misha Glenny, Dan Jones, Suzannah Lipscomb, Natalie Livingstone, Margaret MacMillan, Catherine Ostler, John Preston, Professor David Reynolds, Andrew Roberts, Simon Sebag Montefiore, Kate Williams and Andrea Wulf; broadcaster Zeinab Badawi; psychologist Tanya Byron; former Head of the British Secret Intelligence Service Sir Richard Dearlove; architects Lord Rogers and Amanda Levete; cultural leaders Director of the V&A Tristram Hunt and CEO of Serpentine Galleries Yana Peel; businesswoman Dame Helena Morrissey; actress Ruth Wilson and many more.

Panel topics and sessions for this year’s festival include: reflections on WWI in its centenary year; Russia and espionage in the 21st century; women and power; female monarchs; great literary adaptations for film and television; as well as the festival mainstays of history and politics, with a closing debate on Brexit between Philip Collins, Jonathan Freedland, Michael Gove, Anne McElvoy, Kwasi Kwarteng, Stephen Pollard and June Sarpong.

Chairman of Cliveden Literary Festival and author of The Mistresses of Cliveden, Natalie Livingstone, comments:
“I am thrilled that Cliveden is once again hosting such an exciting array of cultural tastemakers, brilliant writers and speakers.”

President of Cliveden Literary Festival and author, Professor Andrew Roberts, says:
“Following the great success of last year, we are very excited to be presenting another amazing line up, which reflects Cliveden’s central place in the worlds of history, politics, architecture, powerful women and the arts.”

Tickets are on sale now at