Witnessing the stately beauty and extravagance of Blenheim Palace is reason enough to visit the national treasure set in the lovely, rolling Oxfordshire landscape.
But head there between today and Sunday and you can enrich your trip with the chance to see more than 50 leading figures from the worlds of literature, the arts and politics who are being hosted as part of the 2016 Blenheim Palace Festival of Literature, Film and Music.
This year’s four-day festival see acclaimed speakers gather from a range of creative fields including literature, fashion, food, film and music with speakers as diverse a TV chef Ken Hom to actor and writer Simon Callow.
Among this year’s highlights are the former Royal Ballet principal dancer and now BBC Strictly Come Dancing judge Darcey Bussell talking about her life, BBC Coast presenter Nicholas Crane on the British landscape and SDP founder Lord Owen on both his life and his new book on Churchill’s War Cabinet – the great war leader was born at Blenheim.
Award-winning actor, director and writer, Simon Callow, is set to talk about the life of Orson Welles and his own personal fascination with biography, with author and Harper’s Bazaar editor Justine Picardie looks back at the visits to Blenheim made by the Dior fashion house in 1954, 1958 and this year.
The final day of the festival on Sunday will mark the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death with a 90-minute performance of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream performed in the Orangery and a performance ofShakespeare and all that Jazz by acclaimed singer Jacqui Dankworth.
Don’t miss the next issue of Discover Britain, on sale November 4, which looks at beautiful Blenheim and its relationship to Churchill.