Voewood Voewood Voewood Voewood
I almost wish we were butterflies and liv'd but three summer days — three such days with you I could fill with more delight than fifty common years could ever contain. John Keats

What is Voewood? It's a house shaped like a butterfly, a party, a culture clash, an artistic shindig in a late summer garden. Voewood is a frame of mind.  

Voewood's 2014 festival is not curated so much as concocted from the dreams of a rare book dealer with a rock and roll heart. Imagine Withnail throwing a party at Jay Gatsby's house. It's a cultural jukebox loaded with writers and thinkers, talkers, drinkers and musicians who have no need of words. Arriving at Voewood is to emerge from a chrysalis of shadowy trees into the flying colours of the gardens. When the deep purple falls, Voewood is a moth, glimmering over candlelit paths where the night is always young. Decadence has never been so civilised.

Who comes to Voewood? The esteemed and the unfamiliar, the notorious and the new, low lifes and ladies who lunch, dandies and dawdlers. Literary delinquents take tea on the lawn with gentleman rock stars, debonair in tattoos and tweed. There are poets and politicians, artists and attention seekers, lovers of gardens, haters of camping. Some dogs and children. Artists and audiences mingle; at Voewood everyone is of substance.

Voewood's pleasures are timeless: a bittersweet cocktail of late night conversation, vigorous debate and sudden laughter in another part of the garden. At this urbane festival, on the edge of an English country town, trouble is stirred up in the most delightful way.

Cate McKay-Haynes