The Sunday Times and The Times, Ireland Edition announce exclusive print media partnership with ‘Borris House Festival of Writing & Ideas’

Donna Tartt, Margaret Atwood, Kit de Waal, Bob Geldof, Alison Spittle, Fintan O’Toole, Darina Allen, Dolly Alderton, Cillian Murphy and John Paul Jones among those lined up for event

The Sunday Times and The Times, Ireland Edition are delighted to announce an exclusive print media partnership with the upcoming ‘Borris House Festival of Writing & Ideas’ which is taking place in the village of Borris in Carlow.

Billed as ‘a few days of heaven for the culturally curious’, the ‘Borris House Festival of Writing & Ideas’ promises stimulating dialogue and discourse with over 60 speakers from all over the world, including writers, artists, film-makers, political commentators, poets and musicians.

Now in it’s seventh year, the event has become known for its casual, friendly atmosphere, and for its extraordinary line-up of speakers. Located in the magical surroundings of Borris House, the seat of the High Kings of Leinster, the event has been described by the writer Ian McEwan as “one of the most stimulating literary festivals in the world…”.

Complimentary copies of The Times, Ireland Edition will be gifted to audience members on Friday June 8 and Saturday June 9. Journalists from The Sunday Times and The Times, Ireland Edition will also attend to report on the event, providing readers with fascinating insights and colourful reflections on festivities.

Hugo Jellett, co-founder of the event, says: “This festival is a little like a shot in the arm – an inoculation of intelligence, an infusion of fresh thinking, a stimulating draught of bright ideas and real connections. Not dissimilar to what you enjoy when reading either The Sunday Times or The Times, Ireland Edition. Our partnership with the publications has been our number one choice for three years, and that is quite simply because it shares the philosophy of our festival absolutely – built on curiosity, openness and a rare sense of ease, with a hunger for good writing. The readers of these publications are our audience, and we admire greatly the stable of the very finest writers who go to work each day to provide inspiration to their readers.”

Kate Gleeson, Marketing and Sales Manager for The Sunday Times and The Times, Ireland Edition says: “This is an absolutely unmissable event on the Irish and international cultural calendar and we are absolutely delighted to be involved. It is a great opportunity for attendees to enjoy stimulating exposure to thinkers and talkers outside their usual orbit. The striking variety of writers who travel to Borris to take part is testament to the high regard with which the festival is held and, as a result, we’re delighted to be the print media partner.”

Below is a snapshot of the events taking place in what is a rich and densely programmed festival, crammed full of fascinating and stimulating discussions:

  • Writers Donna Tartt, Margaret Atwood, Rachel Kushner, Alan Hollinghurst, Patrick McGrath, Kit de Waal, Elizabeth Strout, Philip Hensher and Hanan Al-Shaykh
  • Bob Geldof will feature in the inaugural Doyle Collection Annual Interview
  • Author Colm Toibín will introduce a rehearsed reading by Lisa Dwan of Pale Sister, his new dramatization of the voice of Ismene, sister of Antigone
  • Deirdre O’Kane, Francesca Martinez, and Spitting Image and Not the Nine O’Clock News creators Sean Hardie and John Lloyd (also the brains behind QI) are attending along with Alison Spittle, who will interview Sarah Breen (a Borris native herself!) and Emer McLysaght to discuss their smash-hit novel Oh My God What A Complete Aisling
  • Fintan O’Toole, Una Mullaly and Emmet Kirwan will discuss the result of Repeal the 8th Referendum and its implications in Irish society, while Ivana Bacik will talk to Ibrahim Halawa, the Irishman released after spending four years in an Egyptian prison.
  • Two grandes dames of cuisine Darina Allen and Claudia Roden will chat with fellow chef Rory O’Connell
  • Dolly Alderton and Roisin Ingle will discuss love, Danny Denton and Lisa McInerney will talk about bad girls and bad boys in literature, while war journalist Ben Anderson and photographer Giles Duley will discuss their experience on the frontline in Mosul
  • The trio of author Max Porter, adapter and director Enda Walsh and actor Cillian Murphy, fresh from the extraordinary theatre production of Grief is the Thing with Feathers, will talk through their experience
  • In annual poetry presentations by the T.S. Eliot Foundation, both former American Poet Laureate Billy Collins and Michael Longley read from their work
  • Music features strongly, with John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin) discussing his opera project Ghost Sonata. Guy Pratt (guitarist with David Gilmour, Madonna, Roxy Music) and Viv Albertine (The Slits) will be there, while guests will also enjoy a candlelight performance by Iarla Ó Lionáird and fiddler Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh of The Gloaming and guitarist Steve Cooney
  • David Dawson will give a talk illustrated by his highly personal photographs of Lucian Freud
  • Other speakers include journalist Misha Glenny, who will talk about organised crime while artist, writer and documentarian Raoul Martinez will discuss radical thinking. Scottish journalist and China specialist Isabel Hilton will give her insights on Chinese environmental awareness and historians Ben MacIntyre, Roy Foster and Margaret MacMillan will explore contemporary global issues


For the full programme, please see:          


The Sunday Times and The Times, Ireland Edition offer readers an in-depth and authoritative mix of news, business, politics and sport as well as insightful opinion and analysis. The publications deliver  well-balanced perspectives on local and international stories as well as offering a range of diverse and thought-provoking views and opinions from top columnists such as Justine McCarthy, Conor Brady,  Anne Marie Hourihane, Lise Hand, Cormac Lucey and Jason O’Mahony.

The print edition of The Times, Ireland Edition is on shelves from Monday to Saturday, while the digital edition is available via tablet app, smartphone app or on On Sundays, subscribers can obtain access to the digital edition of The Sunday Times or purchase the print edition of the publication.

As well as being well informed on the stories that matter, readers can also enjoy a range of unrivalled lifestyle content – interviews, music, arts, film, theatre, food and beauty – while the digital editions also offer thousands of interactive puzzles and access to a variety of video content, including highlights of GAA and Premiership football matches.


The Sunday Times and The Times, Ireland Edition

Know your times or follow us on @thetimesIE