Our tours: Shakespeare’s London Life and Times

TIM BARRON, former west end actor, takes you around the London sites associated with England’s most famous playwright.

We ‘meet’ in the Roman amphitheatre rediscovered in 1988 below The Guild Hall to talk of London’s fantastically rich theatrical heritage. Then it’s over the river to the historic coaching inn, The George to imagine a touring theatre venue that William Shakespeare would have recognised from Elizabethan times.

On to Southwark Cathedral, where Charles Dickens was a bell ringer and Edmond Shakespeare (William’s brother) is buried. We will consider the Bishop of Winchester’s ‘geese’ and the 50% royalty he took from Shakespeare’s Globe theatre. Pausing to ask the question ‘How did Shakespeare know so much about foreign lands to set almost a third of this 37 plays abroad?’.

We will pass by the remains of the Globe and the Rose Theatre and then the reconstructed Globe and Sam Wanamaker Theatres. Across the Thames is the Mermaid theatre (the City’s last ) that leads to Blackfriars and Shakespeare’s house. Lets contemplate the enigmatic The seven ages of man statue set where William would have known Baynard’s castle then on to Middle Temple Hall, the venue for the first performance of Twelfth Night on 2nd Feb 1602. On the other side of the Thames is Sir Laurence Olivier’s dream, made concrete by Sir Denys Lasdun’s brutalist, Royal National Theatre. ‘The National’ continues the tradition of The Bard of Avon being the world’s most performed playwright.

To see when this tour is next taking place, visit our ‘forthcoming tours‘ page.

If you would like to arrange this as a private tour for a group, organisation, family or others, please email us to find out more.

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