Caring for the Collections

Please support the urgent conservation needs and long term care of one of the greatest Shakespeare collections in the world.

Our Collections contain many treasures relating directly to Shakespeare the man, rare books of the kind Shakespeare knew and used, many objects from his time and the archive of the Royal Shakespeare Company.  Caring for our Collections is a huge privilege and responsibility.  We urgently need to raise more money to carry out this important work which is why we are launching this appeal.

You can read below about three of the most important aspects of this vital conservation work.

Every donation we receive will be acknowledged in our annual fundraising report. All donations of any size will be very gratefully received and put to good use. Please support us if you can.

You can donate online by clicking on the button below or download a donation form and post it to us.



Make a gift in memory or honour of a loved one

A donation is also a wonderful way to honour a friend or loved one. If you would like to do this then please download and complete the donation form or contact us on 01789 204016 or email


Rare documents and early printed books

We hold over 2,500 early printed and rare books and documents, including several First Folios and an Elizabeth I signature. Their conservation needs are ongoing and at least 300 books currently need condition checking and repair.  Many of these items harbour a real connection to Shakespeare and are among the most important collections in the world.

£15 could catalogue an early printed book noting condition and marginalia

£50 could pay for a specialist assessment of a rare book or document

£250 could go towards the repair of a rare book


Caring for our Collections on display

Maintaining ideal museum conditions at the Shakespeare Houses where many of our paintings and much of the furniture and textiles are displayed is challenging.

However we can improve these conditions by rotating the displays and by adding UV filters to the windows. We are appealing for help to purchase some much needed equipment.

£35 could pay for an hour’s specialist onsite conservation

£160 could pay for a tiny tag environmental monitor. We need 200 of these

£7,000 could pay for UV filters on all the windows at one house



Cataloguing and supporting our library

Our library is one of very few specialist libraries that is open for anyone to use and we receive no funding to help us do this.

Only 35% of our books and documents are in our online catalogue which is a significant barrier for those wishing to research and access the collections.We are asking for support in cataloguing and to help towards the cost of keeping the library open.

£4.50 could digitally catalogue one of our modern books

£40 keeps the reading room open for one hour

£900 could catalogue our entire collection of 205 editions of Hamlet