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Shakespeare Birthplace Trust outlines reopening plans for its world-famous heritage site in Stratford-upon-Avon

BP Good to Go

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is making preparations to reopen Shakespeare’s Birthplace and its shop in Stratford-upon-Avon following the Government’s response to easing Covid restrictions.

Shakespeare’s Birthplace is hoping to open its doors to visitors once again on Monday, 17 May 2021 after being closed for seven months due to the pandemic. Meanwhile, Shakespeare’s Birthplace Shop on Henley Street will open independently on 12 April in line with the reopening of non-essential retail. The Trust is also planning for a phased reopening of more of its Shakespeare family homes, and will announce the details in due course.

Rachael O’Connor-Boyd, director of visitor experience and business development at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, said, “Reopening Shakespeare’s Birthplace is an important and positive step for the town’s economy and for the nation’s culture and tourism sectors. Between now and May, we will be developing detailed operating plans building on the success of last year’s opening in between lockdowns where we were able to welcome more than 23,000 people safely through our doors. Although we remain cautious in our planning, we look forward to warmly welcoming visitors back again and sharing Shakespeare’s rich stories and his enduring legacy in the safest way possible.”

Shakespeare’s Birthplace has been awarded Visit Britain’s ‘We’re Good to Go accreditation for Covid-19 safe attractions and will be responding to the gradually-changing regulations with safety measures in place across the Birthplace, garden and shop, and the introduction of an online advanced timed ticketing system.

All visitors will be required to wear face coverings, follow a one-way route, and maintain social distancing of 2 metres throughout. In order to manage capacity and to ensure the comfort and safety of visitors, tickets must be booked online in advance through our website.

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is an independent charity charged by an Act of Parliament with the care of the world’s greatest Shakespeare heritage in Stratford-upon-Avon. The Trust normally generates 98% of its own income. In 2020 it suffered a loss of income of £8.5 million due to the impact of the pandemic, and has relied on emergency funding from Arts Council England and the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund, designed to help arts and heritage organisations to survive the pandemic.

While the sites remain closed the Trust continues to share Shakespeare’s work, life and times digitally via its Museum from Home pages on the website, offering audiences of all ages and interests the opportunity to encounter Shakespeare in the comfort of their home - from podcasts, quizzes and online events, to Shakespedia and free education resources supporting children with their home schooling. For more information and the latest updates, see www.shakespeare.org.uk.