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The Charleston Festival

Now in it’s 29th year, the Charleston Festival brings together a remarkable cast of writers, thinkers, artists and performers to interrogate history, politics, science, literature and society.

Many thanks to this year’s speakers who included : Nick Clegg, Richard Ford, David Grossman, Harriet Harman, Barry Humphries, David Olusoga, Ann Patchett, Vanessa Redgrave, Tamara Rojo, Philippe Sands, Elizabeth Strout and Colm Tóibín amongst others.

Professor Stephen Hawking was the recipient of the Charleston-EFG John Maynard Keynes Prize, which was accepted on his behalf by his daughter Lucy Hawking, and friend, Professor Kip Thorne.

Charleston Festival 2017

Provisional dates for next year’s festival are 18 – 28 May 2018.

The festival programme will be announced in February.

Join as a Friend of Charleston to receive priority booking for 2018 Festival – your best change to secure tickets to see your favourite speakers.

Join our mailing list to get the first news on 2018 dates and line-ups.


Charleston would like to give special thanks to our generous Associate Partners: Hurstpierpoint College and Rathfinny Wine Estate.

And to the festival’s official sponsors: EFG Private Bank; Viva Magazines; Sussex Country Gardener; Lancing College; Mayer Brown; Nira Wright; Mayfield School; The Bloomsbury, A Doyle Collection Hotel; Pelham House Hotel; Merchant Gourmet; Art Fund; Harwoods Land Rover; The Sigrid Rausing Trust; Brighton Gin; The Ondaatje Foundation; Scoop Magazine; Herbert Scott Ltd; University of Sussex; MCR Media Solutions Ltd; City Books; Charleston to Charleston Festival; Arts Council England V&A Museum Purchase Grant Fund; Charlotte Street Hotel; Bede’s School; Harvey’s of Lewes; The Cuthbert Horn Trust; Sotheby’s Harper’s Bazaar; South Downs National Part Authority

Some Picture Highlights from 2017 Festival

Vanessa Redgrave at Charleston Caroline Lucas and Michael Rosen at Charleston Barry Humphries at Charleston Charleston Festival 2017 Charleston Festival 2017 Charleston Festival 2017 Charleston Festival 2016 Anne Sebba at Charleston AKbar EShafak MThien at Charleston

What's on

27 Nov
Woodcut Christmas Card workshop

Due to popular demand we’ve added a second Woodcut Christmas Card session with artist Helen Brown. Helen More

Paper Cutting workshop 01 Dec
Paper Cutting workshop

Tutor Su Blackwell will guide you through the delicate art of paper cutting and sculpting, working More

Christmas wreath workshop 04 Dec
Christmas Wreaths and Garlands workshop

This day long workshop will guide you step by step through the art of Christmas wreath More

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