, France
My Fee Ranges


Hugh Mitford Raymond is the author of “The Mitford Family” Nearly A Thousand Years of History, 2016 ISBN 9781903506448 – £16.99 / €20.00 and

“British Policy In The Middle East & The Creation of Israel” 2015 ISBN 1515087832 – £7.50 / €9.00 and

“The Middle East As It Was” – a series of five books on Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Iran & Afghanistan. “Syria As It Was” 2017 ISBN 978-0-9955839-0-0 £4.50 / €5.00 and “Palestine As It Was” 2017 ISBN 978-0-9955839-1-7 £4.50 / €5.00

Available from all good bookshops, Waterstones & Amazon

Born and raised in South Africa, Hugh grew up on the back of a horse and went on to train and breed racehorses. He has served in the South African Defence Force completing active duties in Mozambique, Caprivi Strip and South West Africa. He also managed large farming operations in Zimbabwe. Widely travelled he has lived in 6 countries and speaks 4 languages, working for several international companies, along with IBM and United Nations. He has been resident in the South of France for over 20 years and has served on the central committee of the British Association (Menton, Nice, Cannes & Var) linked with the British Consulate for over 15 years, providing help to British residents along the Riviera. He is a member of the London Society of Authors and Chairman of SAFI, the South African International Association of the Riviera. Hugh is the great-great grandson, nephew and cousin to the last seven squires of Mitford, on the direct mainline of the Mitford family of Mitford Castle and estates in Northumberland and Yorkshire since 1042/1066. (Ref. Mitford Estate Act 1854, By Royal Assent, Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London.)

My Specialist Subjects


"Discover the influence and energy of one of history’s most famous and controversial families from the Norman times and the beginning of England to the disintegration of the family seat in the 21st century. Landowners and philanthropists, writers and historians, activists and fascists and peers of the realm feature in one of the world’s most fascinating dynasties".
To quote – “The fact that he is a Mitford himself is unique and adds an extra dimension and passion to the telling of his family’s story. I would highly recommend his book and this talk to anyone interested in history or intrigued by the idea of putting those Mitford girls into context!” Open discussion.


Many have heard of the famous, infamous and scandalous Mitford Girls. Diana, who married Bryan Guinness, heir to the Guinness brewery fortune and later married Sir Oswald Mosley, the fascist leader and due to her admiration of Hitler, got locked up in Holloway prison for three years. Unity became a friend of Hitler and Nazi supporter and shot herself when war was declared between England and Germany. Jessica became a communist and writer (American Way of Death) and Deborah, became Duchess of Devonshire and Chatsworth. Nancy, the famous author and not to forget Tom, the only son who died from wounds in the war. Hugh presents an insight from his family and life, and his 15 year friendship with author, Lesley Blanch MBE, wife of French icon Romain Gary, and her intimate friendship with Nancy, Diana, Deborah and the Duchess of Windsor. Open discussion.


Somerset Maugham said the French Riviera is a sunny place for shady people. That was during the golden “Belle Époque”era. The Mitford's were there and formed part of the Riviera Set (Mary Lovell's book "The Riviera Set"). Hugh brings this alive with the remarkable career of an intimate friend who lived to the age of 96 years and worked for many Riviera icons - a Pulitzer and Nobel Prize winner, Pearl Buck, Graham Sutherland, David Niven, Emery Reves - Churchill's publicist, Niarkos and Onassis, James Clavell, Dr Michael Ellis De Bakey, Ronald Elwin Neame, Malcome Muggeridge, Sir Anton Dolin, Gérald Van der Kemp, Somerset Maugham Estate, Comtesse Sanjust di Teulada, and others - who lived along the Riviera and influenced the course of history. Open discussion.


After serving as the first British Consul in Morocco, Edward Ledwich Mitford was offered a job in Colombo, Ceylon now Sri Lanka and served as the British Consul for 25 years. Only problem was, how to get there… as he hated travelling by ship? Before telephones existed and photography was invented, aged 28 years, he undertook the most adventurous and perilous journey of his life. Edward was the first person to ride 7000 miles on horse back from London to Colombo. In Hugh's new series of five books entitled "The Middle East As It Was" Hugh details Edward’s horseback journey through the towns and villages of Syria, Palestine, Jordan, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and India. Open discussion.


Talking of the Middle East, many think of Peter O’Toole and the famous Lawrence of Arabia. However, before him there was someone that also became the doyen of the British foreign office. Lawrence felt close to the Arabs and tried to create a pan-Arabic state, whereas Edward Ledwich Mitford was driven towards creating a home for the Jewish nation. The beginning of Israel starts with Hugh's great-great grandfather Edward Ledwich Mitford who was the first person to present a detailed plan for the creation of the independent state of Israel to the ministers of the British government which later led to the Balfour Declaration and British Mandate. Originally published by J Hatchard & Son, Piccadilly, London in 1845, now Waterstones. In hindsight, HAD THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT ACTED decisively at the time, perhaps there would have been no WW2 and no mess in the Middle East? Hugh, co-author of British Policy in the Middle East and the Creation of Israel, will share with you his grandfather's motivation in writing this true story. Open discussion.


Admiral Robert Mitford was on excellent terms with the Khedive Mahomet Ali of Egypt and this provides the basis of an intriguing family story. His only daughter Margaret Mitford married William Tyssen-Amhurst (Lord Amhurst). “The Cleopatra needle that stands on the Thames Embankment in London once belonged to my grandfather” (Admiral Robert Mitford). They all had a passion for Egypt and with their youth and unlimited Tyssen funds started to build a collection of Egyptian artefacts. It was here (from the Mitford-Amhurst link) that Howard Carter began his interest and career in Egyptology. Part of this collection is now at the Metropolitan Museum in New York. Hugh will explain what happened to one of England’s largest private collections of Egyptian artefacts. Open discussion.


South Africa is on a downhill slide. The international press and politicians care less for farm murders and much else? What a very sad state, from apartheid to what democracy? Much has changed. The legacy of Nelson Mandela has been totally shredded, by his own ANC people. Ask yourself why? To understand any country one needs to know its history and culture. Hugh's great uncle Bertram Mitford wrote “When two great bulls stand looking at each other over one fence, are they friends for long?” Bertram Mitford, a contemporary of Rider Haggard (much favored by the "British establishment" for his romantic portrayal of Southern Africa, as opposed to Bertram's more robust and realistic viewpoint), wrote 44 bestselling novels covering the facts, cultural realities, people, politics and tribal history of South Africa from 1881 to 1913. Hugh was born and grew up in South Africa, and presents a unique and intimate insight to the books and history of what his great uncle understood and wrote about South Africa, then and today. Open discussion.


Training racehorses is an individualistic procedure needing - character, patience and understanding. The basics are the same, as any horse or human to race, must be healthy and fit in body and mind. The tricky part is the way the horse is brought to peak fitness and maintaining that degree of fitness over a period of time. Not only that – if one is lucky enough to have a quality horse to enter in the English Derby, the Prix Diane, L’Arc de Triomphe, the Dunlop Gold Cup or the Durban July Handicap to mention a few – it’s also about training the owners and captains of industry and their ideals and personalities in order to cope with the ups and downs of the racing industry! Hugh grew up on a horse, from show-jumping to cross country and dressage - to breeding and training racehorses. Join him for a first hand insight into the fascinating world of breeding and training racehorses. Open discussion.


All talks (UK & France) done with dynamic, full colour, Microsoft Power Point presentations, usually lasting around 40/50 minutes followed by open discussion, informal and relaxed. All Talks free of charge in support of all good, fund-raising, not for profit / charitable organisations. Contact email -


A very big thank you for your most amazing presentation to our members. We were delighted to see a lot of members and guests we hardly ever hear from attending the evening and we have received a lot of compliments on your talk. I for one was fascinated by the stories of the different characters in your family. The evening was a great success for the British Association of Monaco. Vanessa Ilsley Vice President & Chair of Events. 24 March 2012

British Association of Monaco

Your presentation was undoubtedly the highlight of the annual Kick-Off Meeting. There is little I can add to the applause you got, other than to say “well done”. It’s support like this which will build up the confidence of the divisions in the professionalism of the Communications function. Once more, congratulations. John Magill, Director Public Affairs, IBM. (audience 1200 people).


I would like to thank you once again for all the work that you put into making last week’s National Managers’ Meeting the success it was. In recognition of your fine efforts I would like you to let your hair down and have an evening out with a partner at IBM’s expense. Once again, many thanks. Brian Mehl, Managing Director, IBM. (audience 360 IBM managers)


Your audio-visual “Customer Engineering Round Up” was regarded as an excellent production by the engineers. I want to thank you for your outstanding support and your professional guidance you have given me. Your help is truly appreciated by Customer Engineering! I am looking forward to working with you again in the future. Franz Thalmann, Director Customer Engineering, IBM. (audience 600 computer engineers)


Just to formally say thank you very much for your role in organizing the fine Kick-Off Meeting we had last week. By popular acclaim it is the best we have ever had. The program was crisp, the audio-visuals superb and the whole program ran with absolute clockwork efficiency. Many thanks to you and your Audio-Visual Sound Team for “Making it Happen” Rollo Johnson, Director Business Planning, IBM. (audience 1000 people)


A super job. It finally worked out very well. There was not a single, perceivable flaw from a production point of view and for that I congratulate you and the members of your Audio-Sound Team. One of our speakers did not really deliver the goods the way he could have (you’ll know who) but then we rarely have a 100% hit rate in this regard. Doug is pulling together a post mortem for review with my management team and I would appreciate your feeding your ideas and comments into him for this purpose. Again, thank you for many weeks of hard slog. Much appreciated. Rollo Johnson, Director Business Planning, IBM. Top Achievers Award Seminar, IBM Executive Management and guests. (300 people)


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