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Reading Room

Our world class Shakespeare collections can be accessed through our Reading Room

Update on Reader Services - 23 August 2021

We are pleased to announce that as part of our phased approach to extending Reader Services for users requiring access to the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s museum, library and archive, we will be reopening the Reading Room at the Shakespeare Centre for in-person research activity from 31 August. This is in addition to our current Remote Enquiry and Remote Copy Order services.

The Reading Room

Access to the Reading Room will be by appointment only, bookable a minimum of seven days in advance. Appointment slots will be for a maximum of two hours. Initially, we’ll be offering the following bookable slots:

Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays: 10:15am-12:15pm; 10:30am-12:30pm

In the initial launch period we will be limiting bookings to one slot per researcher per week. However, we will keep this under review and hope to increase the number of slots available in due course.

All material must be pre-ordered and the number of items made available may be subject to limits. However, we will liaise with researchers during the booking process to ensure access is maximised within current restrictions.

To book an appointment:

Contact the team at [email protected] and let us know:

  • The date you wish to visit and
  • Details (including reference numbers, where possible) of items you wish to view. Do consult our Online Catalogue when selecting material.

To prepare for your visit:

  • Please see our Reading Room Visitor Information page, which provides details on our location, access information and terms of service.
  • Please also note that visiting our Reading Room is free, but some service fees may apply. Please see Reader Services & Fees for more details.

Remote Services

We will continue to offer an enhanced remote copying service to support access to those who are unable to travel to the Shakespeare Centre due to the pandemic.

To place an order:

  1. Submit your copy order via our new online Remote Order Form
  2. If you do not know the references of items you wish to order, please consult our Online Catalogue.
  3. Once we have received your order, we will let you know if it is possible to copy your items and how much it will cost. 
  4. Payment, if applicable, will be taken via our new online payment portal.
  5. Material will then be copied and sent, electronically or in hard copy. Because of the ongoing restrictions on accessing our building and the complexity of different copy orders, please allow up to six weeks for this.

For more information on our current services please see Reader Services & Fees.

If you have queries or other requests, please contact [email protected]. You may also wish to browse our online catalogue or read our Collections blogs.

Please refer to this page for future Reader Services updates. For updates on the Trust's wider position please see Latest Updates.

Thank you for your patience and continued support. 

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Further Shakespeare studies

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