THE 13th annual Beyond Borders festival will be taking place at Traquair House on August 26 and 27.

And this year it will feature an exclusive interview with Alastair Campbell, former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s director of communications and strategy.

Campbell’s newly-released book, But What Can I Do?, details the rise of populism and polarization in global politics, and how young people can make a positive difference.

He will be interviewed by two students from Peebles High School and Edinburgh Napier on his new book and experience in politics.

In August last year, Campbell (pictured) spoke on his podcast, ‘The Rest Is Politics’, with former MP Rory Stewart, on how his experience at the Beyond Borders festival previously had influenced his new book after being questioned on using his podcast to create a new political movement.

He said: “I feel a constant conflict between a responsibility to do more, but sometimes feeling that I don’t know how.

“I just want a younger generation to come along.

“The reason I’m writing this book, urging more young people to get involved in politics, is because our generation has to move on, and politics needs the new generation.”

On getting to interview Alastair Campbell, Rory Edwards, a student at Peebles High School, said: “But What Can I Do? is a very thought-provoking piece.

“Even for those who disagree with Alastair Campbell, it’s a worthwhile read. Since studying Higher Politics last year, my interest has continued to grow. I’m honoured to be given this opportunity to interview such an influential and experienced figure.”

Rose Moncur, the student interviewer from Edinburgh Napier University, added: “To be given the opportunity physically ask the burning questions that are on young people’s minds today directly to Alastair, off the back of his new book, but also on his vast experience in British politics, is an opportunity I am equally excited and honoured to be a part of at Beyond Borders this year.”

The interview with Alastair Campbell during the Beyond Borders festival will be on Sunday, August 27 starting at 5.30pm.

The full Beyond Borders International Festival programme and box office is available online at:

For full ticket information, visit

If you have any questions, queries, have any accessibility requirements, or if you would like help booking your tickets email or call 0131 290 2686 (Tuesdays 9.30am - 5.30pm).