York at centre of a perfect brain storm for ideas festival

Fabulous fiction… Anthony Horowitz. Photograph: Charlie Gray
12 Jun 2014 @ 9.45 pm
| Entertainment
Fabulous fiction… Anthony Horowitz. Photograph: Charlie Gray
Fabulous fiction… Anthony Horowitz. Photograph: Charlie Gray

York will be generating so many ideas in the next couple of weeks that its ancient walls will struggle to contain them.

The city will be in the centre of a perfect brain storm as the York Festival Of Ideas returns with more events than ever.

From international diplomats to bestselling authors, the festival brings together leading minds from around the world to debate issues around the theme Order and Chaos.

Star names include former children’s laureate and War Horse author Michael Morpurgo; co-creator of The Fast Show, writer Charlie Higson; and Anthony Horowitz, the creative force behind everything from Foyle’s War to the Alex Rider children’s books.

Here are a few picks from more than 140 events…

Festival of Ideas highlights

One lump or two? The science of the cream tea explored
One lump or two? The science of the cream tea explored


A fascinating look at architecture and history around the city, with tours of York Minster to York’s Cold War bunker, and an exhibition of projects submitted for the York Design Awards 2014

A celebration of Anglian York – events on King Arthur, tour Roman cemeteries and attend a Beer and Beowulf evening to sample a specially brewed Eoforwic Ale

Powerful events on the shadows of war, from a guided tour of Castle Howard to the experiences of life during and after the Holocaust

Books and art

Murder They Wrote – an exploration into crime writing and the national fascination with enduring fictional heroes including Sherlock Holmes and James Bond

An exploration of art in the public realm, from art trails around the city with York Curiouser to talks from artists and curators including Michael White from Tate Liverpool

Food and drink

A day celebrating and debating food – discover food in Jane Austen’s novels at Dinner With Mr Darcy, hosted by Bettys, talks on sustainability and the future of food and learn the science behind the traditional cream tea

Science and health

A city centre marquee demonstrating ‘science out of the lab’ bringing a range of scientific experiments to the streets of York

The topic of healthcare and how we deal with illness, sponsored by the Centre for Chronic Diseases and Disorders, including an event on the relationship between poetry and illness at the York Theatre Royal


A series of events on ‘Economic growth for the many not the few’ with leading policymakers, business leaders and economists discussing money markets from ancient Rome to predicting the next global financial crash

Music and shows

Performances and concerts all over the city, from a concert by the Texan Flower Mound Chamber Singers to a production of The Jekyll & Hyde Case in the city centre

Sport and transport

Cycling stories include Ned Boulting recounting stories from 12 years following the Tour de France for ITV. And Michael Hutchinson talks about the science behind cycling

The order and chaos of the railways, from Victorian planning to a day in the life of a porter at the National Railway Museum