The UK’s most unique festival returns with best ever line-up

The Voewood Festival is back 15th – 17th August 2014

Musicians Peter Hook, Midge Ure, Glen Matlock and Paul Young and multi award-winning novelist Eimear McBride are just some of the many artists appearing at this year’s Voewood Festival (Friday 15th to Sunday 17th August 2014).

A festival like no other, Voewood combines a mix of writers, journalists, singers and musicians, both established and emerging, with a country house garden party vibe and a touch of genuine English eccentricity. The programme is not so much curated as concocted from the dreams of Simon Finch, a rare book dealer with a rock & roll heart.

Set against the glorious backdrop of Finch’s own home, the iconic Arts & Crafts masterpiece that is Voewood House in Norfolk, the Festival is as much shaped by the building and its history as by the artists invited to take part.

The Festival has run twice before in 2011 and 2012, with a year off in 2013. This year’s line-up is its most diverse yet.

Among the many musical highlights will be a solo acoustic set from Ultravox frontman and Band Aid and Live Aid creator Midge Ure. Sex Pistol Glen Matlock will bring his Philistines, Peter Hook will revisit the back catalogue of two of the most influential bands of the 20th century, Joy Division and New Order, whilst Los Pacaminos (featuring Paul Young) will import their own brand of Tex-Mex to north Norfolk. New talent meanwhile is ably represented by the likes of acclaimed singer songwriter Nadine Shah and the prodigiously gifted 15-year-old Sacha Luffman.

The literary names taking part include environmental activist Paul Kingsnorth, who will be reading from his new first novel The Wake, whilst acclaimed music writer Chris Salewicz will discuss his latest book, The 27 Club, an analysis of seven influential musicians who died at 27. DBC Pierre, Iain Sinclair, Louisa Young, Owen Sheers and Tim Lott are among the many others taking part.

Grammy Award winning bass guitarist Guy Pratt, who has worked with Pink Floyd, Michael Jackson and Madonna, will present his brilliant one man show, packed with stories, anecdotes and gossip.

Voewood will even host a debate between The Right Hon Norman Lamb, senior minister and longtime Lib Dem MP for North Norfolk, and Michael Baker, prospective UKIP member.

In addition there will be food and drink from an array of local suppliers, children’s events, book and record stalls, impromptu discussions, special guests and much, much more.

As Simon Finch said, “I don’t go to many parties but I really wouldn’t miss this one!

Simon Finch and Voewood House

Simon Finch is a rare book dealer who has owned shops in Norfolk, Mayfair and Notting Hill. (He opened the latter with the help of Hugh Grant just after the release of the film of the same name.)

Simon’s catalogues have always been impossible to categorise, ranging as they have from Dennis Hopper’s Easy Rider jacket through to Shakespeare’s First Folio (1623).

A true polymath, Simon constructed a new build property on Portobello Road with the architect Philip Meadowcroft, which was shortlisted for a RIBA award. He also owned a club in London’s Rathbone Place, which he claimed was “the size of a pocket handkerchief and looked like the inside of an expensive handbag.”

He bought Voewood, on the edge of the small Georgian town of Holt, in 1998, having first viewed the details on a friend’s coffee table. An institution since it was first built, Simon was the first owner to live in it as a private house.

Voewood was originally designed in 1903 for the Revered Percy Lloyd by the acclaimed Arts & Crafts architect E S Prior.

Originally budgeted at £12,000, costs quickly spiraled. Despite having a considerable family fortune, the eventual £60,000 it cost to build this captivating example of the Arts & Crafts aesthetic was too much for Lloyd, and Voewood House was immediately rented out as a boys’ school. Requisitioned during World War I, it was then sold to the Health Authority. It had been operating as an old peoples’ home when Simon bought it.

Simon spent eight long years restoring the property, with many artist friends helping him along the way.

Today Voewood House is back to its former glory, so much so that it was voted by Country Life magazine as England’s Favourite House in the Eastern Region. It has been the subject of numerous articles in just about every major newspaper, as well as appearing in scholarly pieces by writers such as Dan Cruikshank.

This unique property works its magic on all who visit, inspiring both new conversations and partnerships. Amongst the many stars who attend the Voewood Festival, the house is by far the biggest.

The event prides itself on its intimacy. The performers stay in the bedrooms, while the festivities take place in Voewood’s Grade I listed gardens. As Simon reveals, “You cannot lose your friends or even your enemies at the Festival. The stars mix in a relaxed way with their public. Without question there is nothing like it.”

For further information or to buy early bird tickets:
Tel: 01603 598636 or email