Our Yarnton Manor students joined 2.5 million others in visiting Stratford-upon-Avon on Saturday―thankfully, though, that is a yearly statistic, and students were able to enjoy the sights and historical atmosphere unencumbered by crowds. Stratford-upon-Avon is most famous for being the birthplace of England’s most treasured cultural figure: the playwright and poet William Shakespeare. The place is also a picturesque gem in its own right, with thatched-roofed cottages sitting prettily on the banks of the River Avon.
Stratford is fittingly the home of the Royal Shakespeare Company, who reside in the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. This was students’ first stop in a tour that also included a peek inside the house where Shakespeare was born, a look at Hall’s Croft (the house of Shakespeare’s daughter Susanna), and the site of New Place, where Shakespeare died in 1616. Students wandered along the river, basking in the sunshine and in the historic splendour of the place. Some, inspired by their surroundings, traded lines of their favoured sonnets, or had a go at reciting some snatches of Hamlet or Romeo and Juliet.