The Lord Burghley 500 Foundation is a charitable organisation founded in January 2019 with the aim of organising and promoting a national and international commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the birth of William Cecil (First Baron Burghley) in 2020 and to establish academic initiatives creating a long-term legacy.

Our mission is to ensure the British public is better-informed about the pivotal role Lord Burghley played across 40 years throughout Queen Elizabeth I’s reign as her chief minister and trusted advisor. We aim to leave a lasting educational legacy programme across the wider academic community for future generations through scholarships and bursaries, research papers, annual Burghley lectures, a schools’ programme and the website and social media platforms.


His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales KG KT GCB OM AK QSO PC


Professor Stephen Alford FRHistS: Professor of Early Modern British History, Uni. of Leeds.

Sonya Branch: Executive Director for Legal Directorate, Bank of England.

The Duke of Buccleuch KT KBE FSA FRSE: High Steward of Westminster Abbey.

Lord Burghley: Son of Marquess of Exeter. Resides Canada.

The Rt Rev. and the Rt Hon. Lord Chartres KCVO

Sir Richard Dearlove KCMG OBE: Former Head of MI6.

Professor Susan Doran: Historian specialising in reign of Elizabeth I. Jesus College, Oxford University.

Paul Double: City Remembrancer.

The Marquess of Exeter: 8th Marquess of Exeter, 18th Baron Burghley. Resides Canada.

The Very Reverend Dr John Hall: Dean of Westminster.

The Lord Harris of Peckham: Former Carpetright Chairman, Sponsor Harris Federation.

The Rt Hon. The Lord Hennessy of Nympsfield FBA: Historian and academic.

The Right Reverend David Hoyle: Dean of Bristol, Dean-Elect of Westminster.

Prof Norman Jones: History Department, Utah State University, USA.

The Lord King KG, GBE, DL, FBA: Former Governor of the Bank of England.

The Baroness Manningham-Buller LG DCB: Former Director General MI5.

The Rt Hon Sir John Mummery DL: Former Lord Justice of Appeal. President Investigatory Powers Tribunal.

The Lord Nash: Former Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Dept of Education. Co-Founder Future Academies.

Sir Mark Rylance

Desmond Shawe-Taylor LVO: Surveyor of the Queen’s Pictures.

Dr David Starkey CBE, FSA, FRHistS: English constitutional historian, broadcaster.

Dr Simon Thurley CBE, FSA, FRIBA, FRHistS: Architectural historian. Former Chief Executive English Heritage.

Thomas Woodcock CVO OStJ DL FSA: Garter Principal King of Arms.

Christopher Woodward: Director Garden Museum. Art historian.


The Marquess of Salisbury (Chairman and Director): Descendant of William Cecil 1st Lord Burghley. Chancellor of University of Hertfordshire. Former Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Lords.

Miranda Rock (Joint Chairman): Descendant William Cecil 1st Lord Burghley. House Director of Burghley House Preservation Trust since 2007. History of Art graduate.

Charles Sebag-Montefiore (Treasurer): Chartered Accountant. Trustee National Gallery London. Former Trustee of the Art Fund (2000-11) and of the Samuel Courtauld Trust (1992-2007). Co-author The British as Art Collectors: from the Tudors to the Present, (Scala, 2012), a survey on collecting in Great Britain over 500 years.


Dr Janet Dickinson (Cambridge Conference organiser, Social Media and Website): Specialist in history of early modern England and Europe. Conference Secretary for The Society for Court Studies. Lecturer for New York University in London and Senior Associate Tutor in the Department for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford.

Evie Duff Gordon (Trinity College Dublin and Irish liaison): Former Director Liberty plc, Charles Barker, Nardello & Co, World Agricultural Forum. Trustee of The UK Trust for Trinity College Dublin.

Shana Fleming (Executive Assistant to the Marquess of Salisbury): Former Special Adviser to Conservative Chief Whip; Steering Committee, Constitution Reform Group.

Hilary Hugh-Jones (Chalke Valley History Festival coordinator): Patron, Chalke Valley History Festival. MA Medieval History.

Dr Jill Husselby FSA (Planning Director): Architectural historian. PhD University of Warwick 1996: ‘Architecture at Burghley House: the Patronage of William Cecil 1553-1598’.

Mary Ann Prior (USA representative/liaison): Art curator to Pfizer Inc and Bank of America. MA in Cultural History. Awarded Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship. Director of Collections Vulcan Inc. Seattle.

Nog Sawdon (Administrator): Former Director King James Bible Trust. Fundraising roles at Thames Diamond Jubilee Foundation, Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, Canterbury Cathedral Trust and Cool Earth.