National Lottery players can enjoy free entry to three historic Shakespeare attractions in the heart of his home town on special dates in December.
On Friday 15th, Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th December 2017, lottery ticket holders can visit Shakespeare's Schoolroom & Guildhall for free on presentation of a valid National Lottery ticket or scratchcard*. Shakespeare's New Place and the Royal Shakespeare Company's (RSC) The Play's the Thing exhibition will be open for free to ticket holders between 11th and 17th December 2017.
Anyone that visits and collects stamps from all three attractions will be entered into a prize draw to win a fantastic Shakespeare prize package worth over £180.**. The initiative is a way of saying a big +"Thank You" to people who have helped raised vital funds for good causes by buying a lottery ticket.
Thanks to support from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), Shakespeare's Schoolroom & Guildhall, Shakespeare's New Place, the RSC's Swan Wing all underwent transformation projects, marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death in 2016. Over £6 million of lottery grants were invested in Stratford-upon-Avon in projects celebrating the life and works of William Shakespeare, including:
Stratford's 15th-century was the town's first theatre - and Shakespeare's school. The £1.4m HLF grant supported the restoration of the magnificent Guildhall which reopened on 23rd April 2016, the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death. Visitors can now explore the very building in which the world's greatest playwright went to school.
New Place was Shakespeare's family home from 1597 until his death in 1616. It was the only family home he ever bought. Supported by a £2.2m HLF grant, Shakespeare's New Place reopened in August 2016 after more than 250 years as a garden and six years as an archaeological site. Today, New Place has a new landscape of beautifully restored gardens and breath-taking sculptures inspired by Shakespeare's life and his works. Visitors are taken on a multi-sensory journey throughout the historic site where they can learn more about what Shakespeare's family life might have been like.
The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) has been performing Shakespeare's plays in Stratford since 1879, when the original Shakespeare Memorial Theatre was constructed. Thanks to National Lottery grants, the RSC has been able to restore and redevelop the Grade II* Swan Wing, the only surviving part of the Victorian theatre. As part of the £2.8m project the RSC's The Play's The Thing immersive exhibition highlights some of the Company's most iconic theatre productions and features treasures from the archive, including rarely-seen props, exquisite costumes and original set designs.
** Prize Draw: One lucky winner will win a fantastic Shakespeare prize package worth over £180, T&C's apply.
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