Richard the Third and a Snow day at Henley Literary Festival

Dan SnowDan Snow, Philippa Langley and Max Hastings newly confirmed for festival.


With events covering everything from the 14th Century to the 1960s, including the woman behind this year’s discovery of Richard the Third’s skeleton, this autumn’s Henley Literary Festival is a must-attend event for anyone interested in history.


BBC presenter Dan Snow has now been confirmed to appear at the festival on Friday October 4th, the same day as his veteran broadcaster father Peter as they discuss, respectively, battle castles and the 1814 British invasion of Washington.


“I’m thrilled to be discussing Battle Castles at Henley this year, as the audience is always full of history-lovers,” commented Dan Snow. “And with my father and I having both previously spoken at the festival, it is particularly pleasing to be doing so on the same day for the first time.”


To mark this October’s publication of The King’s Grave Philippa Langley, instigator of the search that culminated in Richard III’s remains being found in a Leicester Car Park and star of the Channel 4 documentary, is joined by her co-author, historian Michael Jones to discuss one of this year’s most discussed news stories.


Festival favourite Sir Max Hastings returns to the Kenton Theatre to speak about the beginnings of the First World War, while journalist Stephen Cooper charts the conflict though its impact on the players of Rosslyn Park rugby club.  Meanwhile Chatham House senior fellow Charles Emmerson and novelist Dominic Prince join forces to look back a century to 1913, the year before Europe went to war.


The Victorian era is the focus of both BBC historian Ruth Goodman and Daily Mail columnist Simon Heffer as they each make their Henley Literary Festival debuts. Bringing things more up to date, Richard Davenport-Hines marks the 50th anniversary of the Profumo scandal with a talk drawn from his entertaining and informative An English Affair.


The new additions join authors including Ann Widdecombe, Roy Hattersley and Giles Coren for this year’s festival, which takes place in association with Laithewaite’s Wine at venues across the town from 30th September to 6th October. Many more authors will be added in coming months. More information is available at and on Twitter @HenleyLitFest.