Friday, October 08, 2010

At Stratford

It was quite early on a Saturday morning in Stratford so there weren't many people around when I took these photos. A couple of hours later and the place was heaving with shoppers, visitors  and parties of tourists with their guides. We parked up and walked into the town looking for breakfast - stopping to take a few photos of the riverside and the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.

The theatre has been closed for almost four years now whilst building work to update and modernise it has been taking place.

There is a new 'look-out' which we had seen on our local TV news (Stratford, like us is in the West Midlands region) being lowered by crane on top of the tower; it is 118 feet high.

The theatre is due to open later this year with a few preview events;  the main programme of plays is due to start in February next year and the theatre will be formally re-opened in April.

There is still a lot of work to be done as you can see from the photo below

The road layout in front of the theatre was being changed too

The entrance to what used to be the gift shop and Swan Theatre

We walked past the 'Dirty Duck' to the Courtyard Theatre where the RSC have been based whilst the main theatre is being refurbished.

We then walked towards the town centre passing Halls Croft

The home of William Shakespeare's daughter Susanna and her husband Dr John Hall

Round the corner and past the Almshouses -  at the end near the church the grammar school which Shakespeare is said to have attended.

On the corner is New Place the house Shakespeare owned in later life - it is thought that this is where he died.  There was a 'Dig for Shakespeare' archaeological excavation going on in the garden.

Shakespeare's birthplace museum and visitor centre.  

Opposite it was The Christmas shop - selling all things for the festive season. 

Next door to the birthplace was the inevitable souvenir shop which from the back has lovely views across the birthplace's garden.  We could see and hear an actor reading out a sonnet to a group of  entranced  tourists.

All aboard for a Shakespearean tour - hold very tight please, ding! ding!


  1. There are some magnificent buildings but I would really want to have a peek inside the almshouses! I bet they do a good trade on the Shakespearean tour!

  2. Ive not been to Stratford for ages - before I had the kids!! I must be due a visit. It is one of those places though that is always teeming with tourists. Thanks for taking me. xxxx

  3. Oh, that was fun and interesting!

  4. I've been to Stratford a few times ... best time was when we surprised our two 'Narnia nuts' with a trip to see the RSC's The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.
    It was magical!
    Thanks for the tour. I hadn't realised the theatre was being rebuilt!
    Love Kathy xxx

  5. This is on my top ten when I get to travel across the ocean some day! Top 5, actually! Really enjoyed this post!

  6. Is it that "Stratford"?! Stratford upon Avon???!!! I've heard many times the name of this village, my English teacher was a bit obsessed with William Shakespeare! :-)
    Have a good weekend!

  7. It's ages since I've visited Stratford. It's always so busy. You did well to take such a good selection of photos before the place was cluttered with tourists. Very interesting post :)

  8. I shall be hanging the Christmas decoration bought in the Christmas shop a few years ago this year again. A lovely shop. A nice day thanks for taking me with you.x

  9. Stratford is a lovely place. I have a very similar photo of the river, as in your first photo. x