Shakespeare’s grand family home of New Place in Stratford-upon-Avon was demolished in 1702. Now the site of his last home is set to become a major new landmark attraction, with support from a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust aims to re-imagine this internationally significant site, to create a place where visitors can discover the story of Shakespeare at the height of his success as a writer and prominent citizen of his home town.
The project will also be a catalyst for involving the communities of Stratford and the wider Midlands region with the world-famous heritage on their doorstep through new volunteering and education programmes.
Work is due to start in March 2015, and Shakespeare’s New Place is scheduled to open for the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death on 23 April 2016. We will now also seek matching funds to further support the £5.25m project.
As part of the plans for the site, visitors will be invited to walk in Shakespeare’s footsteps through a new entrance on the footprint of his original gatehouse. The layout of the house will be echoed in a contemporary landscape treatment, giving visitors an impression of its scale and its relationship to the surrounding buildings.
A deep, illuminated pool is planned to mark the heart of the site where the family’s living quarters once stood, surrounded by paths engraved with Shakespeare’s plays. Commissioned artworks and displays throughout the site will evoke a sense of family life and Shakespeare’s major works written during the 19 years he owned New Place.
The project will also see further works including essential conservation work to the neighbouring Nash’s House and restoration of the sunken Knot Garden. Local residents have enjoyed free entry to the Great Garden for many years, and this will continue when New Place reopens.
Visit our website to read more about our plans for New Place.