About Us

We are a young London festival seeking to reflect the best of the city we see around us. So our wide-ranging programme aims to be inclusive, welcoming to all ages and diverse. But also affordable – with open access to our site and free events, as part of our rich mix.

GBF was founded in 2015, by three Greenwich residents –working daily with words and ideas – who felt this historic South-East London site would be a dream place to launch a festival celebrating the journey of discovery every book can take you on.

Support from the University of Greenwich, who host the festival in the historic Thameside buildings and grounds of the Old Royal Naval College, allowed that dream to become a reality. We also feel honoured to appear under the Royal Greenwich Festivals banner, with support from the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Intimate in scale, though grand in setting (none of our venues seat more than 200), our Festival aims to give audiences a unique opportunity to hear from authors they admire, but to also discover new voices, ideas and experiences too.

So, in 2017, participants could explore our site as part of an architectural tour, do a creative writing workshop, hear from science writers, historians, bold memoirists, fearless poets and journalists debating modern truths. Children were able to make ‘a bottle of happiness’ in one of the craft workshops.

The festival welcomes award-winning writers, but also champions new and emerging voices. Our speakers will debate ideas, discuss their research and offer insight into the writer’s life.

We look forward to announcing the authors and activities that will make up our 2018 festival in the new year!


The Festival Team

Patricia Nicol, Co-Director and Alex Pheby, Co-Director

Olivia Bishop, Hester Brown, Suzanne Louail, Zoe Pettit, Maureen Stapleton, Cindy Ward, Karen Ward



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