Shakespeare's Birthplace

Attractions Stratford upon Avon

Shakespeares Birthplace
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Shakespeare's birthplace is a focal point for the 3.5 million visitors to the UK, who annually make the pilgrimage to Stratford upon Avon. Shakespeare's Birthplace is located in Stratford's Henley Street and is possibly the most famous and visited literary landmark in the UK. Originally belonging to Shakespeare's father John ( variously employed as a wool and corn trader, glover and even a money lender) and Mary Shakespeare, who moved from nearby Snitterfield to Stratford upon Avon in 1529, shortly after gettiing married. Local records show that the Shakespeare family moved to Henley Street some ten years prior to William Shakespeare's birth in 1564. Shakespeare's birthplace remained in the hands of his descendants until the 19th century.

The 'Shakespeare Birthday Committee' obtained the Henley Street house in 1847, with the financial and moral support of the public. An extensive project of restoration then took place to restore the house to it's former glory. Shakespeare's birthplace was originally made of local materials; with oak timber from the nearby Arden Forest and blue stone from Wilmcote.The Victorians removed the plaster from such houses to expose the half timbered facades and give us the traditional image of Tudor housing.Much of the original stone, oak beams and fireplaces are still in place and care has been taken to furnish the house with contemporary Elizabethan furniture. A more recent refurbishment was completed in 2000 (with the house being reopened by the noted Shakespearean actors Dame Judi Dench and her late husband Michael Williams),ensuring that Shakespeare's birthplace still looks and feels the way it would have done in the 16th century. The gardens, too are meticulously attended, and feature many of the trees, flowers and herbs mentioned in Shakespeare's works.

Shakespeare's birthplace, along with all of the Shakespeare houses in Stratford upon Avon, are now administered by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Full details of opening hours and admission charges are available from their website at

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