Who are the establishment?

In Britain, the establishment was traditionally understood along historic class lines, as a network of people who went to the best private schools, went on to Oxbridge, and then took prominent positions in arts, politics and industry. Today, many allege, little has changed: Eton still produces a disproportionate number of politicians, and, according to the Sutton Trust, alumni of private schools and Oxbridge still dominate top jobs. But is the establishment today more than this? An excellent panel share their thoughts in this packed out debate and audience members raise some big questions.

Filmed by WORLDwrite-WORLDbytes volunteers at the Battle of Ideas at the Barbican in November 2019. The speakers are: Steve Richards: broadcaster; political commentator; presenter, BBC Radio 4’s Week in Westminster; author, The Prime Ministers: reflections on leadership from Wilson to May. Jill Rutter: senior fellow, Institute for Government; former director of strategy and sustainable development, Defra. Robert Tombs: emeritus professor of French history, Cambridge University; author, The English and their History. Bruno Waterfield: Brussels correspondent, The Times. The chair is Claire Fox: director, Academy of Ideas; Brexit Party MEP; author, I STILL Find That Offensive!