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Speakers include:

Ian Adams

Ian Adams works with words and images to explore the possibility of faith, hope and love reshaping the world. He is a poet and priest, Spirituality Adviser to Church Mission Society, Tutor in Pioneering at Ridley Hall Cambridge, and partner in the Beloved Life project. He loves jazz.


Kurt Barling

Kurt Barling is a Professor of Journalism at Middlesex University. He is an award-winning investigative journalist and documentary-maker who built a reputation working at the BBC from 1989 until 2015 covering alternative narratives in the mainstream media.  

Kurt gained a first class degree in Languages and Politics before graduating with a Masters and PhD from the London School of Economics where he began his career as an expert in International Relations. 

He worked across News and Current Affairs for 25 years from, Assignment and The Money Programme to Today and Newsnight.  He was the Special Correspondent for BBC London News from 2001-2014.  Kurt is author of 4 books including the latest published in Germany this year called Darkness over Germany, the book described by the Times as an "eloquent polemic" in 2015 - The R Word: Racism and a revelatory book on the security services role in sheltering Abu Hamza from scrutiny in the early noughties. 

Kurt’s research interests include the importance of AI to the future of journalism and the role of alternative narratives in shaping national identity.

Jonny Baker

Jonny Baker is the director of mission education for the Church Mission Society where he has set up and leads the Pioneer Mission Leadership Training - see He has also published several books reflecting on church, worship and mission along with collections of liturgy published from the bottom up.

Marie-Elsa Bragg

Marie-Elsa Bragg is half French and half Cumbrian, and is a writer, lecturer, Priest and a Duty Chaplain of Westminster Abbey. Her debut novel Towards Mellbreak is published by Chatto & Windus. She has worked for 20 years as a Spiritual Director and is a member of WATCH Parliament, a small group who work alongside parliament on women’s issues within the Church.

Simeon Courtie

Simeon’s humorous travel memoir, The Long and Whining Road, recounted his year driving a camper van around the world with his family. Self-published, it won five international awards including Grand Prize Winner at the London Book Festival. He pitched his first novel to agents at the end of 2017 and is writing his second.

Adrian Daffern

The Reverend Canon Adrian Daffern is Assistant Archdeacon of Dorchester and Area Dean and Rector of Woodstock.

Philip S. Davies

After fifteen years as a Vicar, Revd Philip S. Davies is now a full-time author of fantasy adventure novels for young people. He has Chaired the U.K. Association of Christian Writers, and speaks regularly at local primary and secondary schools, churches and other groups.

Malcolm Guite

Poet-Priest Malcolm Guite is Chaplain of Girton College, Cambridge and teaches at the Faculty of Divinity at the University of Cambridge. He lectures widely in England and North America on Theology and Literature and has published poetry, theology, and literary criticism and has worked as a librettist. His books include: Love, Remember (October 2017); Mariner, a spiritual biography of Samuel Taylor Coleridge (February 2017); Parable and Paradox (2016); The Singing Bowl (2013); Sounding the Seasons (2012); Theology and the Poetic Imagination (2010) and Faith Hope and Poetry (2006). Malcolm has edited two poetry anthologies for Lent and Advent: The Word in the Wilderness (2014) and Waiting on the Word (2015).

Malcolm has a particular interest in the imagination as a truth-bearing faculty and continues to reflect deeply on how poetry can stimulate and re-awaken our prayer life.

Malcolm enjoys sailing, walking, old books, live music, riding his Harley Davidson motorbike and all the varieties of the British countryside and weather. Malcolm is also part of the rock band Mystery Train, regularly performing gigs at Grantchester, Cambridge and other places around Cambridgeshire.

Peter Hunt

Peter is a regular singer with the North Cotswold Chamber Choir and occasionally their conductor. He is passionate about singing and has a lifetime’s experience as a choral trainer, vocal coach, teacher and conductor; he has conducted the Chipping Norton Choral Society for twenty years. He has recently retired as Deputy Head of Berkshire Maestros, the Music Hub which delivers music education to the young people of Berkshire. Here he led large-scale singing events for thousands of young singers and co-led the development of Pantomimus, a unique programme of music activity for the under fives. He is also the inspiration behind Voiceworks, a series of singing books which launched a revolution in the approach to inclusive and accessible singing for all ages from 5 to 95, supporting those who lead these activities in schools and the wider community.

In June 2016 Peter started an adult Singing for Wellbeing group at the Banbury Wellbeing Centre as part of the NHS Social Prescribing scheme which encourages arts activity to complement traditional medicine. He is developing this more widely in North Oxfordshire and working with a local charity to link practice with research to enable more people to benefit from this enlightened approach.

Peter is much in demand as a workshop leader and trainer and has presented at conferences across the UK and in Canada and USA.

John Inge

Bishop John is the 113th Bishop of Worcester.  He is the Church of England’s Lead Bishop for Cathedrals and Church Buildings.  His academic interest is in the theology of place and in his writings he has reflected on the role of place in human experience and the Christian scheme of things.

Ghada Karmi

Dr Ghada Karmi was born in Jerusalem and her family lost their home in the Arab-Israeli War on 1948 when Israel expelled Palestinian Arabs from villages and towns in which they had lived for centuries. As well as being a medical doctor she is an academic at Exeter University  and writes and speaks regularly on Palestine and Israel.  Her book In Search of Fatima tells the story of how she returned to her family home in Jerusalem to rediscover elements of her childhood and to understand how the Palestinians, who used to form 90% of pre-1948 Palestine, became a minority in their own state.  She has also written Married to Another Man, which argues for a One-State Solution to the Arab-Israeli dispute, and Return: A Palestinian Memoir. In 'Returning to Jerusalem: Past and Present', she will be in conversation with Karl Sabbagh, a British-Palestinian documentary maker and writer, and author of Palestine: A Personal History,  who lives in Bloxham.

Francesca Kay

Francesca Kay’s first novel, An Equal Stillness, won the Orange Award for New Writers and was nominated for the Authors' Club First Novel Award and for Best First Book in the Commonwealth Writers' Prize (Europe and South Asia Region). Her second novel, The Translation of the Bones, was longlisted for the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction. Her most recent novel, The Long Room, was published by Faber & Faber last year. She lives in Oxford.

Kids 4 Peace

Founded in Jerusalem in 2002, Kids4Peace is a global movement of Jewish, Christian & Muslim youth and families, dedicated to ending conflict and inspiring hope in divided societies around the world.

Rachel Mann

Rachel Mann is a priest, writer and poet. Formerly Resident Poet at Manchester Cathedral, she is the author of four books including the bestselling memoir, ‘Dazzling Darkness’. Her most recent book, ‘Fierce Imaginings: The Great War, Ritual, Memory and God’ reflects on the place of faith and myth in our rituals of remembrance.

Sarah Meyrick

Sarah Meyrick is a PR professional working in the charity sector, and also a freelance writer. She writes regularly for the Church Times. Her first novel, Knowing Anna, was published in 2016. 

Cole Moreton

Cole Moreton is a writer and broadcaster exploring who we are and what we believe in. His new book The Boy Who Gave His Heart Away has just been published by HarperCollins, telling the true story of a modern medical miracle. He interviews people for the Mail on Sunday and was named Interviewer of the Year at the Press Awards 2016. He had a weekly spread in The Independent on Sunday up until its closure, with reportage on the issues of the day. Cole's writing has appeared in the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Telegraph and The Sunday Times among many others. An experienced broadcaster, his television and radio appearances include The Big Questions, Today and The Moral Maze, as well as a number of documentaries. He has recently presented Sunday for Radio 4.  

Edmund Newell

Edmund Newell has been Principal of Cumberland Lodge since 2013. A priest in the Church of England, he was previously Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral and founding Director of St Paul’s Institute, and Sub-Dean of Christ Church, Oxford.

Before his ordination, Ed was a Research Fellow in Economic History at Nuffield College, Oxford. His publications include (with John Reynolds) Ethics in Investment Banking and (with Sabina Alkire) What Can One Person Do?, a theological response to the Millennium Development Goals. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and the Royal Society of Arts, and a contributor to Pause for Thought on BBC Radio 2.

Kate Nicholas

Kate Nicholas is a Christian author and preacher with over thirty years’ experience as an editor and media commentator. She has written for titles ranging from The Observer to Ideal Home and was formerly global communications chief for Christian aid agency World Vision, but it took a cancer diagnosis to turn her into an author, with her best-selling autobiography Sea Changed.

Philip North

The Rt Revd Philip North is the Bishop of Burnley. 

Mark Oakley

Mark Oakley is Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral and responsible for the educational and outreach work of the Cathedral. He writes and broadcasts on the areas of poetry, literature, spirituality and human rights.  He is a trustee of the Civil Liberties Trust, an Ambassador for Stop Hate UK, Patron of Tell MAMA and a Visiting Lecturer at Kings College, London.

Eve Poole

Dr Eve Poole teaches leadership for Ashridge Business School. She has a BA from Durham, an MBA from Edinburgh, and a PhD in theology and capitalism from Cambridge. Her most recent books are Capitalism's Toxic Assumptions and Leadersmithing. She blogs for the St Paul's Institute and the William Temple Foundation. She Chairs Gordonstoun School in Moray, and Faith in Business in Cambridge.

John Pritchard

John Pritchard was Bishop of Oxford from 2007 until his retirement in 2014. He has written many books on various aspects of Christian living including: How to Pray, Life and Work of a Priest, God Lost and Found, Living Faithfully, Ten: Why Christianity Makes Sense, and Something More: Encountering the beyond in the everyday.

Fiona Reynolds

Dame Fiona Reynolds DBE became Master of Emmanuel College, Cambridge in 2012.  She came to the college after a long career in the voluntary sector, latterly as Director-General of the National Trust from 2001-2012. During her time as DG she made the Trust warmer and more welcoming, bringing the houses to life and raising the profile of the Trust’s work in the countryside.

Before the Trust, she was Director of the Women’s Unit in the Cabinet Office (1998-2000), Director of the Council for the Protection of Rural England (now Campaign to Protect Rural England) from 1987-98 and Secretary to the Council for National Parks (now Campaign to Protect National Parks) from 1980-87. 

Fiona also holds a number of non-Executive roles.  She is a Non-Executive Director of Wessex Water, Chair of the Cambridge University Botanic Garden, the Green Alliance, the International National Trusts Organisation and the Cathedrals Fabric Commission for England.

Joanna Rossiter

Joanna Rossiter grew up in Dorset and studied English at Cambridge before working in Parliament and as a copy writer. The Sea Change is her first novel. Published by Penguin, it was chosen as a Richard and Judy 2013 summer read and was also Viv Grossop's Big Bath Read for the 2014 Bath Literature Festival. She is currently working on her second novel, set on a remote Atlantic island. 

Andrew Rumsey

Rev Dr Andrew Rumsey is the author of Parish: An Anglican theology of Place, recently published by SCM Press. ‘A magnificent book’, according to Bishop John Inge, this explores the ways in which English culture and community have been profoundly shaped by the parish system - and how resilient and resonant the parochial idea remains. Sam Wells writes: ‘Andrew Rumsey sees with the eyes of a poet, writes with the hand of a scholar and loves with the heart of a priest’. 

James Runcie

James Runcie is an award-winning film-maker and the author of nine previous novels. Sidney Chambers and The Persistence of Love is the sixth book in ‘The Grantchester Mysteries’ series, which began in 2012 with Sidney Chambers and The Shadow of Death. In October 2014, ITV launched Grantchester, a prime-time series starring James Norton as Sidney Chambers. The second season aired in spring 2016 and the third in spring 2017. James Runcie is Commissioning Editor for Arts at BBC Radio 4. He lives in London and Edinburgh. / @james_runcie

Karl Sabbagh

Karl Sabbagh is a British-Palestinian documentary maker, TV producer, writer and publisher. His books include Palestine: A Personal History, telling the history of Palestine through the story of his Palestinian father’s family.  He worked for the BBC and then became an independent TV producer. He has written a dozen non-fiction books on science, engineering, architecture and psychology. He lives in Bloxham.  

Andy Salmon

Major General Andy Salmon CMG OBE spent 36 years with the Royal Marines and is a former Commandant General, Head of Service.  He left the services in 2013. He now produces, directs and narrates an event called “Journey through Conflict” with composer/pianist Tom Donald.

Andy applies his learning and experiences in war to help bring people together for peace and reconciliation. 

Bill Sewell

After a Cambridge degree and a brief wrong turn into accountancy with Price Waterhouse, Bill Sewell followed his love of cooking to open his first award-winning restaurant The Place Below, in the crypt of St Mary-le-Bow, in 1989.  His reputation for no-nonsense cooking techniques and delicious, sustainable food earned him regular features with BBC Good Food and Waitrose Magazine, before completing his two classic and much celebrated vegetarian cookbooks (Food from The Place Below and Feasts from The Place Below), which remain in print today. 

In 1997, following the success of The Place Below, Bill was persuaded to spearhead a unique English Heritage and Heritage Lottery Fund church and café project, in the near derelict All Saints Church, Hereford.  Café@AllSaints celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and is widely regarded as the ‘original and best’ church reordering scheme in the UK.  Restaurants in St Michael’s Cambridge and St David’s Cathedral followed, reflecting his ethos of fresh, simple and seasonal homemade food created with top quality produce from local farms.

Earlier this year Bill turned to crowdfunding  website Kickstarter, to support his new book Bill’s Kitchen and contributions from around the world exceeded his fundraising target in just a fortnight.  The result is a beautifully finished hardback, fully illustrated with gorgeous photography, elegant typesetting and practical layout.  Bill’s Kitchen is packed with over 120 of his ‘all-time greatest hits recipes’ from 30 years of cooking at home and in his cafes, featuring chapters on breadmaking, hearty and healthy family suppers, entertaining friends, using leftovers and creating luscious cakes and deserts.

You can follow Bill and his cafes via Twitter (@billsewellsfood) Instagram (Bills.Kitchen.Cookbook) or Facebook and can pre-order your own copy of ‘Bill’s Kitchen’ via

Shakespeare Revue Company

The sell-out success Shakespeare Revue Company return to Bloxham with Love, Life and Laughter, performed by a company of four. 

Nicola Keen is the West End star of Cats, Guys and Dolls, the original cast of The Phantom of the Opera, and the National Theatre’s Oklahoma! opposite Hugh Jackman. Michael Winsor is a familiar face and voice from television with numerous appearances on The Weakest Link, Pointless, This Morning and Channel 4’s The Last Leg. Clive Hayward is the the West End star of Irving Berlin’s Olivier Award-winning musical Top Hat, the hit comedy Yes, Prime Minister and Much Ado About Nothing opposite David Tennant. As well as his long-running role in The Archers, Malcolm McKee is an Olivier Award-nominated writer, director and composer with many West End and RSC credits including The Madness of George III, When We Are Married and The Shakespeare Revue.

Margaret Silf

Margaret Silf is a spiritual explorer and the author of a number of books for 21st century pilgrims who may or may not identify with organised religion. She travels widely, leading retreats and days of reflection. She has a grown daughter and two grand-daughters and lives in Staffordshire.

Nick Spencer

Nick Spencer is Research Director at the think tank Theos and the author of a number of books, including Freedom and Order: History, Politics and the English Bible (Hodder, 2011), Atheists: the Origin of the Species (Bloomsbury, 2014), The Evolution of the West: how Christianity shaped our values (SPCK, 2016) and, most recently, The Political Samaritan: how politics hijacked a parable (Bloomsbury, 2017).

Francis Spufford

Francis Spufford is the author of Unapologetic, shortlisted for the Michael Ramsey Prize, and the literary bestseller Golden Hill.  His most recent book is the collection True Stories & Other Essays.  He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and is married to a Canon of Ely Cathedral.

Joan E. Taylor

Joan Taylor is Professor of Christian Origins and Second Temple Judaism at King’s College London and is a leading expert on the world of Jesus, with a focus on both history and archaeology. She has authored numerous books and articles, notably The Immerser: John the Baptist within Second Temple Judaism (1997), situating John in his historical, cultural and religious context. She also works on the Bible in cultural reception (Jesus and Brian, 2015), gender and the body (editing The Body in Biblical, Christian and Jewish Texts, 2014), and the Dead Sea Scrolls (The Essenes, the Scrolls and the Dead Sea, 2006).

Theatre 17

Robin Hillman: Actor/Musician & Co-Producer 

Robin Hillman will be playing William Blake in Theatre 17's 'Fearful Symmetry: Blake's Jerusalem'. He is currently playing John Clare in I AM JOHN CLARE has spent several decades performing as an actor, fiddle-player and singer. Recent theatre has includes Albert in A Swan in the Attic and Stephen in Lydia- by Any other Name for Speare Independent Theatre, Inspector Goole in An Inspector Calls for Shire Repertory Company and Everyman in Everyman/Faure’s Requiem. He has also played an Elizabethan Ghost, a part especially written for him. Directorial credits include Wyrd Sisters and The Darling Buds of May’ for Under the Tower Drama, for which the company received a regional NODA Award. As a musician he plays fiddle and sings in a Cajun band, Folk group and Classical. 


Stephen Loveless: Writer/Director & Co-Producer 

Stephen Loveless is a prize -winning writer including the first winner of the Daphne Du Maurier literary Prize and the Radio Netherlands Worldwide Service Audiobook 2008 prize.  His first film script Washing Strangers (Dir. Barry Hale) won a First Cut Award and appeared on Central TV. He wrote the prize-winning shorts Labyrinth Derbicus (Dir. Owen Tooth) and Raven (dir. Kemal Yildirim) and also the feature film Rose (dir, Kemal Yildirim), won the Amsterdam Film Festival ‘Van Gogh Award’. His novella Hibakusha was published in 2011 and Short Story collection In the Kingdom of the Morning 2013. His one-woman stage drama 2011 to 2014 (writer/ director) Asena performed by Genevieve Cleghorn on Sex Trafficking in the UK was twice nominated for the HTF Media Award, and allowed to carry both the Salvation Army Logo and that of ‘Stop The Traffick’.

Malcolm Torry

Dr. Malcolm Torry is Director of the Citizen’s Basic Income Trust and a Visiting Senior Fellow at the London School of Economics. He has written a number of books about Citizen’s Basic Income: Money for Everyone (Policy Press, 2013); 101 Reasons for a Citizen’s Income (Policy Press, 2015); The Feasibility of Citizen’s Income (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016); and Citizen’s Basic Income: A Christian social policy (Darton, Longman and Todd, 2016). A new edition of Money for Everyone with a new title, Why we need a Citizen’s Basic Income, will be published by the Policy Press during 2018. He has also written about the characteristics and management of religious and faith-based organisations: Managing God’s Business (Ashgate, 2005); Bridgebuilders: Workplace chaplaincy – a history (Canterbury Press, 2001; Managing Religion (2 volumes, Palgrave Macmillan, 2014); and Mediating Institutions (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). From 1976 to 1978 Malcolm worked on the public counter in Brixton’s Supplementary Benefit office; and from 1980 to 2014 he served in full-time posts in the Church of England’s parochial ministry in the Diocese of Southwark.

Graham Usher

Graham Usher is the bishop of Dudley.  He is an ecologist by background and has previously chaired the Forestry Commission in the Northeast of England and been a Secretary of State appointee to the Northumberland National Park Authority. He is currently a board member of the Human Tissue Authority.

Ruth Valerio

Dr Ruth Valerio is Global Advocacy and Influencing Director at Tearfund. She is an environmentalist, theologian and social activist and lives down on the south coast with her family. She is the author of the bestselling ‘L is for Lifestyle: Christian living that doesn’t cost the earth’ and has lots of fun trying to practice what she preaches.

Katharine Welby-Roberts

Katharine Welby-Roberts is an advocate for mental health provision in the UK. She works for Christian disability charity Livability UK, which seeks to support churches in developing community that is inclusive of those who experience marginalisation and stigmatisation in society and the church. Katharine speaks about issues relating to mental health and runs a popular blog,, in which she discusses her own experiences with depression and anxiety. She is married to Mike, and they live in a tower at Lambeth Palace with their baby son, Elijah.

Sally Welch

Sally Welch is the author of several books, including ‘Walking the Labyrinth’ ‘How to be a Mindful Christian’ and ‘Pilgrim Journeys’. She is an experienced pilgrim of many years, and is interested in the relationship between pilgrimage spirituality and everyday life. She is currently developing a network of shorter pilgrim routes in the Cotswolds. She lectures and leads workshops on pilgrimage and labyrinth and is the Editor of New Daylight Bible reading notes.


Karl Sabbagh
Malcolm Guite
Margaret Silf
Francesca Kay
Kate Nicholas
Wed 12 Sep @ 09:02
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