Ditchley Foundation

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The Ditchley Foundation is a British organisation based at Ditchley House near Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, which aims to promote international relations, especially Anglo-American relations, through a programme of around fifteen annual conferences on matters of international interest. The foundation was incorporated in 1958 by Sir David Wills, descendant of the tobacco importing family, W. D. & H. O. Wills of Bristol.

At each conference, around forty invitees are drawn from senior levels of politics, business, the armed forces, media, and academia, with roughly a third of guests being American, a further third being British, with the remainder being of other nationalities. The director of the Foundation is usually a retired ambassador - the current director is Jeremy Greenstock, former British Ambassador to the United Nations.

Discussion begins with all members present, before participants divide into three sub-groups, each having its own chairman and rapporteur to summarise proceedings. Proceedings end with one more conference-wide session. Like the similar Bilderberg meetings, discussions are private and non-attributable.

A corresponding American Ditchley Foundation helps to shape the conference program as well as select American participants.

Notable members


Accessed April 2013: [3] (for former management see The Ditchley Foundation)

==The Governors Ditchley Governors are chosen by the Council of Management and constitute the Foundation’s governing body. Members serve five year terms.

The current Governors are: Lord Aldington, Robert Ayling, Lord BILIMORIA OF CHELSEA, Georg BOOMGAARDEN, Baroness Bottomley of Nettlestone, John Brademas, Sir Rodric Braithwaite, Sir Nigel Broomfield , Lord Butler of Brockwell, Gordon Campbell, Sir Menzies Campbell, Lord CHADLINGTON OF DEAN, Robert Conway, Robert Cooper, Nicholas Ferguson, Francis Finlay, Sir Lawrence Freedman , Timothy Garton Ash, Nik Gowing , Charles Grant, Malcolm Grant, Sir Jeremy Greenstock, Sir Christopher Greenwood, Dominic Grieve, Lord Hannay of Chiswick, Rita Hauser, Lord HENNESSY of Nympsfield, Will Hutton, Dame Tessa Jowell, Lady JUDGE, Sir David King, Andrew Knight, Pierre Lortie , Kevin G. Lynch , Bronwen Maddox , Philippa Malmgren , Sir David Manning , Francis Maude, Michael Moore, Glen R. Moreno, Edward Mortimer, Sir Richard Mottram, Baroness Neville-Jones of Hutton Roof, Elizabeth PADMORE, Baroness PRASHAR OF RUNNYMEDE, Lord Robertson of Port Ellen, Sir John Sawers , Kamalesh Sharma, Sir Nigel Sheinwald , Constanze Stelzenmuller, Philip Stephens , Louis B SUSMAN, Sir Kevin Tebbit , Sir Crispin TICKELL, Sir John Vereker, Diana Walford, Simon Webb, John Weston, David Willetts , Catherine WILLS, Lady WILLS, Ngaire Woods, Sir Robert Worchester [4]

Former Governors

  • Lord Adonis. Former Transport Secretary.
  • Giuliano Amato. Formerly Prime Minister of Italy.
  • Margaret Beckett. Formerly Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.
  • Paul Boateng. Formerely British High Commissioner to the Republic of South Africa and Chief Secretary to the Treasury.
  • Baroness Bottomley of Nettlestone, JP. Formerly Secretary of State for Health and for National Heritage.
  • John Brademas. Formerly Chairman, The American Ditchley Foundation. President Emeritus, New York University. Formerly Democratic Congressman for Indiana.
  • John Bruton. Former Irish Taoiseach.
  • Robin Butler, GCB, CVO. Master, University College, Oxford. Formerly Secretary of the Cabinet and Head of the Home Civil Service.
  • David Cameron, MP. Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Conservative Member of Parliament for Witney.
  • Menzies Campbell, CBE, QC, MP. Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament for Fife North East and formerly Leader of the Liberal Democrat Party.
  • Lord Carrington, KG, GCMG, CH, MC. Formerly Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and Secretary-General of NATO.
  • Shami Chakrabarti, CBE. Director of Liberty.
  • Lynda Chalker. Formerly Minister for Overseas Development.
  • Robert Cooper. Director General, Council of the European Union.
  • David Hennessy. Formerly Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Lords; Principal of Brasenose College, Oxford.
  • Geoffrey Howe. Formerly Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.
  • David Hunt. Formerly Secretary of the Cabinet and formerly Chairman, The Ditchley Foundation.
  • Douglas Hurd. Formerly Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.
  • Peter Jay. Former Ambassador to the United States.
  • François Lagrange. Chairman, National Commission for Privatisation and President of the Patent Office, France.
  • Roy MacLaren. Formerly Canadian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom and Minister of Trade.
  • Neil Kinnock. Chairman, The British Council. Formerly Vice President of the European Commission.
  • Peter Mandelson. Commissioner for External Trade, European Commission. Formerly Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.
  • John Major. Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
  • David Miliband. Formerly Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and Labour Member of Parliament for South Shields.
  • Patrick Nairne. Formerly Permanent Secretary, Department of Health and Social Security and Master, St. Catherine’s College, Oxford.
  • Pauline Neville-Jones. Minister of State for Security, Governor of the BBC and Political Director, Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
  • Martin O’Neill. Formerly Member of Parliament for Ochil.
  • Malcolm Rifkind. Conservative Member of Parliament for Kensington and Chelsea. Formerly Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.
  • John Sawers. KCMG. Chief of SIS. Formerly British Permanent Representative to the United Nations.
  • Jack Straw. Formerly Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, Leader of the House of Commons, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs; Home Secretary.
  • Elizabeth Symons. Formerly Minister of Defence Procurement, Minister of State for International Trade and Investment, Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
  • Kevin Tebbit. Formerly Permanent Under-Secretary, Ministry of Defence.
  • David Willetts. Conservative Member of Parliament for Havant and Minister of State for Universities and Science.
  • Shirley Williams. Former Leader of the Liberal Democrat Party in the House of Lords and Public Service Professor, Kennedy School of Government. Director, Project Liberty, Harvard University. Formerly Secretary of State for Education and Science.

American Members


  1. Sir Reginald Hibbert - Albanologist and former ambassador in Paris
  2. Obituary of Sir Philip Adams - The Independent
  3. Ditchley Foundation Trustees, organizational web page, accessed April 12, 2013.
  4. Ditchley Foundation Governors, organizational web page, accessed April 12, 2013.

External links