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The Anglo-Hellenic League

The Hellenic Centre

16-18 Paddington Street

London W1U 5AS


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The Anglo-Hellenic League

Note: Although the Anglo-Hellenic League is a member society of the Hellenic Centre, and has a post-box at the Hellenic Centre, it is not affiliated with the Hellenic Community Trust or the Hellenic Centre in any other way. If you would like to contact the Hellenic Centre, you will find information here. We regret that we are unable to forward messages to the Hellenic Centre. 

The Anglo-Hellenic League

Dedicated to promoting Anglo-Greek understanding and friendship, through charitable and cultural work. 




The Council of the League is profoundly moved and saddened by the death of Her Late Majesty The Queen. We grieve her loss and give thanks for her life. We join the whole nation in mourning for her. We know that this sentiment will be widely shared among our membership and, as Chair of Council, I have written, on behalf of the Council and our members, to His Majesty The King to express our sympathy and condolences to him and the Royal Family, and to convey our good wishes for his reign. Like his late mother, who travelled to Greece shortly before her own accession to the throne, the King knows Greece well and will, we may hope, want to maintain his associations with the Greek people amid his new responsibilities. I have also written to our Chief Patron HRH Prince Michael of Kent to express our condolences to him as a cousin of the Queen and member of the Royal Family. God Save The King.


John Kittmer

Chair of Council

  on behalf of all the Council

11 September 2022

Prof. Michael Wood (University of Manchester)

The Marvellous Journey of Theodore of Tarsus’

Friends Room at the Hellenic Centre, 

16/18 Paddington Street, London W1U 5AS

Thursday, 29 September 2022, 7pm 


Using fascinating manuscript evidence, Michael Wood will tell the story of Theodore of Tarsus (c.602-690AD) and his comrade Hadrian the African (630/7-710AD), who introduced Greek culture to England in the seventh century in ‘one of the most important educational programmes ever undertaken in Britain’.


We are delighted that Prof. Wood has accepted our invitation to speak to our members and supporters. His illustrated talk will be introduced by John Kittmer, the Chair of the League; there will be space for Q&A from members of the audience at the end of the talk. 


Michael Wood is Professor in Public History at the University of Manchester. He is the author of several highly praised books on English history including Domesday and In Search of England. His bestselling book In Search of the Dark Ages: A History of Anglo-Saxon England (first published in 1981) has recently been reissued in an expanded and updated form, with a new chapter on Theodore and Hadrian.


Michael Wood has now made well over one hundred documentary films, among them Art of the Western WorldIn Search of the Trojan WarIn the Footsteps of Alexander the GreatConquistadors, The Story of India and The Story of China – all of which were accompanied by bestselling books. 


This event will take place in person only; there will be no live broadcast or recording. A wine reception will follow the talk. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. To attend you must register in advance here.


Council of the League

31 August 2022







We are delighted to announce that the winner of the Anglo-Hellenic League Runciman Award 2022 is Ian Collins for John Craxton: A Life of Gifts (New Haven & London: Yale University Press 2021). 


Announcing the result of this year’s competition on Monday 13 June at a ceremony in the Great Hall of King’s College London, in the presence of the League’s Chief Patron & President, HRH Prince Michael of Kent, and a large audience, Prof. Peter Frankopan, the chair of judges, said:


‘This was a wonderful year to be a judge of the Runciman Award. The books we read were a glorious kaleidoscope that showed the range of interest in all things Hellenic, from the ancient world to the present, from poetry to historical fiction, from top class classical studies to translations of Byzantine texts. As usual, we deliberated long and hard to try to choose one book from this impressive collection. In the end, we decided that John Craxton: A Life of Gifts by Ian Collins, was the most exciting and interesting – and a perfect winner of this prize. Furthermore, we felt that Sir Stephen Runciman would have heartily approved of our choice.’


The winner of the Award, Ian Collins, said: 


Winning the 2022 Runciman Award is an enormous honour for me – and it’s the icing on the cake in John Craxton’s centenary year. The complete Philhellene and the ultimate hedonist, John Craxton wanted only to live and work in Greece. He got his wish at the age of 23 and enduring joy coloured his ensuing pictures. But he long resisted a biography. We were close friends for his last decade and when he finally agreed that I could tell his story, I confessed to keeping copious notes since our first meeting. Many interviews followed and ended at his hospital bed in 2009. I have remained happily in his company ever since, putting together A Life of Gifts. This wonderful award is really for him – a magical artist and a supreme sensualist, wit and anarchic spirit who enjoyed a life-long love affair with Greece.


The Chair of the Council of the League, Dr John Kittmer, said:


Many congratulations to Ian Collins for his magnificent winning biography of John Craxton. The Anglo-Hellenic League celebrates the very best of what binds Britain and Greece together. Through his life and work John Craxton expressed through artistic creation the love that flows between our two countries. It’s a great book of a wonderful life.’


The announcement of the winner of the Anglo-Hellenic League Runciman Award 2022 was made on Monday 13 June, 7pm at King’s College London, which co-hosted the event with the Anglo-Hellenic League. Prof. Richard Hunter FBA (University of Cambridge) gave the keynote address on ‘“Those who do not know the sea”: Homer and the margins of the Greek world’. Prof. Peter Frankopan surveyed the field of longlisted and shortlisted books on behalf of the panel of judges and announced the winner. The winner presented his book in a beautifully illustrated acceptance speech. Addresses were also given by Prof. Marion Thain (KCL), Dr John Kittmer (the League) and Prof. Gonda Van Steen (KCL). 


The Anglo-Hellenic League Runciman Award is sponsored by the A. C. Laskaridis Charitable Foundation and the A. G. Leventis Foundation.




1. The Anglo-Hellenic League Runciman Award was conceived in 1983, as an initiative of Earl Jellicoe, the then chairman of the League, in honour of Sir Steven Runciman, the distinguished historian of Byzantium and longest-serving chairman of the League (1951-1967). It was first awarded in 1986 and has been awarded most years since then.


2. The award is given to the best book (or books) published in English in the previous year on a Greek subject. It aims to stimulate interest in Greek history and culture from earliest times to the present; to reward and encourage good and accessible writing, of which Runciman’s works are an example; and to promote a wider knowledge and understanding of Greece’s contribution to civilisation and values. The prize may be awarded for a work in the field of history, literary studies, biography, travel and topography, the arts, architecture, archaeology, the environment, social and political sciences or current affairs; or for a work of fiction, poetry or drama. Translations from Greek literature into English are also eligible. Books published in 2021 were eligible for the award in 2022.


3. The panel of judges for the award in 2022 comprised: Prof. Peter Frankopan (chair), Dr Dionysis Kapsalis, Prof. Naoise Mac Sweeney, Prof. Judith Mossman and Dr Sofka Zinovieff. The judges announced their long list of 23 titles on 5 January and their short list of 8 titles on 8 April (see and 


4. Ian Collins is an independent art writer and curator. He has written monographs on Rose Hilton, Joan Leigh Fermor and John McLean and has worked with galleries from the Yale Center for British Art in New Haven, to the Sainsbury Centre in Norwich. He co-curated the popular 2017-18 exhibition Charmed Lives in Greece: Ghika, Craxton, Leigh Fermor, which toured from the A.G. Leventis Gallery in Nicosia to the Benaki Museum in Athens and the British Museum in London. Now he is curating John Craxton’s centenary touring exhibition: John Craxton: A Greek Soul. The show is running at the Benaki Museum in Athens until 11 September 2022 (, before moving to Chania’s Municipal Art Gallery (October 2022 to the end of January 2023) and Mesher Istanbul (March to June 2023). Then it will come to the UK. Ian lives in England and Greece.


5. The winning book, John Craxton: A Life of Gifts (New Haven and London: Yale University Press 2021), has been published in Greek translation as John Craxton: Ο αγαπημένος της ζωής. Μία ελληνική ψυχή (Athens: Patakis 2022).


6. Enquiries about the Runciman Award can be made to the acting administrator (Dr John Kittmer) at Information about the two sponsoring foundations can be found at: and The announcement to publishers about nominations for the Anglo-Hellenic League Runciman Award 2023 will be made in October 2022.


Council of the League

The Anglo-Hellenic League

  c/o The Hellenic Centre

  16-18 Paddington Street

  London W1U 5AS

14 June 2022

The Anglo-Hellenic League Runciman Award 2022 

Award Ceremony: 13 June 2022, 7pm - Great Hall, King's College London


Two recordings of the award ceremony are available below. The first is a theatre view and the second is the webinar view. Details of the event can be found here. The handout for Prof. Hunter's lecture and photos of the event are also available below.


All photos are © Katerina Kalogeraki.

Handout (for those watching the keynote address online)
Hunter handout.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [664.5 KB]

Council of the League

15 June 2022 

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