Donors and supporters

A huge thank you to our 2019 Festival donors and supporters.

University of York

We are proud of the University of York’s leading role in establishing and coordinating York Festival of Ideas. As one of the world’s most distinctive universities, we are making life-changing discoveries and creating new technologies to tackle some of the most pressing global challenges. Together with our Festival partners, we are committed to showcasing the importance and relevance of ideas and research, and to engaging with new and diverse audiences.

The University is pleased to support the Festival through the Higher Education Innovation Fund, which facilitates the communication of new knowledge and its benefits to society. 

The Holbeck Charitable Trust

Holbeck Charitable Trust

The Holbeck Charitable Trust is once again delighted to be a Headline Sponsor of York Festival of Ideas. Now in its ninth year, the Festival continues to go from strength to strength.

The 2019 programme offers a huge range of stimulating and diverse events, talks, performances, exhibitions and workshops. We congratulate the Festival on its determination to remain as widely accessible as practicable by staging so many events where entry is free.

As a continuing sponsor, we are proud to support the team’s ambition to develop a Festival which, in time, will become a mainstay of the national cultural calendar.

UPP Foundation

The UPP Foundation is an independent charity established and funded by student accommodation provider University Partnerships Programme to help tackle the biggest issues facing the higher education sector across the UK. We are delighted to collaborate with York Festival of Ideas to present the festival Focus Day, What Have Universities Ever Done For Us? 

French Embassy in the UK

‌The Higher Education, Research and Innovation (ESRI) Department of the French Embassy in the United Kingdom is recognised as a partner for British Institutions and their French counterparts. The ESRI is very happy to work with York Festival of Ideas to present the third edition of A Date with History. Bringing together leading academics from France and the UK, this year’s event will focus on fashion, food and feminism.

Joseph Rowntree Foundation

JRF logo

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) is a politically independent social change organisation whose mission is to inspire action and change to solve UK poverty. JRF is therefore delighted to sponsor and collaborate in the Festival Focus Day, Poverty: How can we tell a new story to inspire change?

The Lloyd's Register Foundation

The Lloyd’s Register Foundation is a charity that helps to protect life and property and support education, engineering related research and public engagement. We are very pleased to have established the Assuring Autonomy International Programme at the University of York and to take part in the Festival Focus Day, Artificial Intelligence: Looking ot the future.

John Templeton Foundation 

John Templeton Foundation

The John Templeton Foundation serves as a philanthropic catalyst for discoveries relating to the deepest and most perplexing questions facing humankind. We support efforts to advance human wellbeing through rigorous scientific research and related scholarship. We are very pleased that our funding is being directed to support the Festival Focus Day, The Poetry and Music of Science.

The C & JB Morrell Trust and the Morrell Centre for Toleration

The C & JB Morrell Trust is a core funder of the Festival. The Morrell Centre for Toleration, which is generously supported by the Trust, is proud to sponsor the Festival Focus Day, Toleration: An outdated concept?. The Centre is dedicated to increasing the philosophical and historical understanding and appreciation of toleration as an idea and as a practice. Follow us @MorrellCentre.

Shepherd Group


Shepherd Group is one of the leading family-owned private businesses in the UK. Founded in 1890 in York, its head offices remain in the city and its operations include Portakabin, Europe's market-leading modular building innovator. Shepherd Group is the proud sponsor of the Fun for Families strand of York Festival of Ideas.

The Institution of Engineering and Technology


The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) is the largest multidisciplinary professional engineering institution in the world. The North Yorkshire Network of the IET is a proud sponsor and collaborator of York Festival of Ideas. This year we will be supporting Creating an Environmentally Friendly Future and It's a Wonderful Digital Life

Jane Moody Fund

With thanks to the Jane Moody Fund for supporting Behind the Scenes of Poldark. Professor Jane Moody, who died in 2011, was founding Director of the University of York’s Humanities Research Centre and co-founder of York Festival of Ideas.

Dr Kenneth and Mrs Patricia Dixon

Dr Kenneth and Mrs Patricia Dixon are delighted to support York Festival of Ideas.

Dr Richard Shephard

Dr Richard Shephard is very pleased to support New Generation Thinkers: To be a man.

London North Eastern Railway (LNER)

LNER logo 2

The train operator connecting Yorkshire with London and Scotland in style and comfort. LNER is proud to support York Festival of Ideas.


Our thanks to those donors and supporters who wish to remain anonymous.

Contact us

York Festival of Ideas

Contact us

York Festival of Ideas