Hunt for new leader of Stratforward BID
A change of leadership is is underway at Stratforward as director Joe Baconnet left his role.
Mr Baconnet who was appointed in 2016, announced his departure to BID Members on Friday, saying, the time was right to seek a new challenge".
He said: "With lockdown restrictions finally lifting and after five years at Stratforward, I feel it is the right time to hand the baton over to someone else.
Having the helm of Stratforward during some of the most challenging times ever faced by the high street - firstly because of changing shopping habits and other economic pressures and then latterly due to Covid - it is time for a new challenge.
Stratford town centre is going to be a very different place going forward and Stratfoward is going to be crucial in helping to shape its economic recovery. This will require fresh and innovative ideas from all stakeholders in the town, as well as the business community, so now seems the best time for a change.
I know I am leaving the organisation in safe hands. The Stratforward team is amazing. They know the businesses that they work so hard on behalf of and they understand the town and the needs, not just of the businesses, but also the local residents and visitors that use the town on a daily basis.
I will be sad to leave Stratford but I believe it is the right thing for the company, the town and for me. The Stratforward board has been very accommodating in this and will be working alongside British BIDs to ensure continuity of service until a new executive director is in post."
In a message to businesses, Mr Baconnet added "I wish every one of you the very best of luck for the coming weeks and months as you face the challenges of rebuilding after the traumas of the last year. Remember you are strong, you are resilient and you are not alone."
Stratforward BID will now begin the process of appointing a new director
Read the May newsletter which contains information on.....
Shakespeare's School reopens for the Summer
Whilst most kids went back to school in March,
popular attraction, Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall, will reopen in June
One of the world’s most influential locations in the story of William Shakespeare’s life will give a warm welcome to visitors from Monday 28 June 2021 - another great sign
Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall is renowned for being where the world’s greatest playwright attended school, but it also played an influential role in the life of his father and William’s own writing, all of which is revealed as part of the visitor experience.
Located in the heart of Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall has been central to the fabric of town life for over 600 years. It still operates for part of its life today as a school, but since its restoration in 2016 has also been welcoming visitors from across the globe to discover its fascination for themselves. Standing in the very space where William Shakespeare went to school is a unique, spine tingling experience, as is the thought of the legacy that he would go on to create from this humble setting.
This will also be the first time that people have been able to visit Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall since the publication of All the Sonnets of Shakespeare edited by Paul Edmondson and Stanley Wells. In the book Shakespeare’s works are presented in chronological order and with this the distinct possibility that sonnets 153 and 154 were written whilst William was at school. It was also a setting that was to prove inspirational to his plays, with Master Thomas Jenkins said to be represented by the character of Sir Hugh Evans in The Merry Wives of Windsor, mocked in the drama by a student called William. These are just some of the stories to be discovered in the immersive and authentic atmosphere of this medieval building, now known as Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall.
Lindsey Armstrong, General Manager of Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall, says,
“We are very much looking forward to welcoming visitors once again to Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall. This has always been a building that has brought people together and there is no better way of stepping back through the chapters of history to discover the Stratford-upon-Avon of Tudor times. Our team of guides are here to help bring alive enthralling stories, that alsoinclude Theatre at the Guildhall and the Court of Record, as well as revealing the rare medieval painting that was discovered during the building’s restoration.”
Tickets to Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall go on sale from Monday 10 May 2021 and are priced at adult £10; concession £8; child (5-16) £6.50; family (2 adults and 2 children) £27; additional child with family ticket £4.50; under 5s free. Included in the price is an interactive lesson in the Tudor schoolroom where William Shakespeare was taught.
Book your tickets at shakespearesschoolroom.org
Thank you to Warwickshire Whats On
Stratford Literary Festival 2021
Events are gradually returning and its not long to Stratford Literary Festival which runs from 8th to 22nd May. Yes!
Watch out for these Stratford Literary Festival stickers popping up around town at bookshops.
Largely taking place online but there are in-person workshops and events. There’s a huge range of events and this year there's a £30 season pass that is ridiculously good value.
There is some exceptional children’s entertainment including the Children’s Laureate, Cressida Cowell, the creator of the much loved , ‘How to Train Your Dragon’! 🐉
To see what is on offer go to Stratfordliteraryfestival.co.uk
Follow them at @stratfordlitfest
Great coverage in the Stratford Herald as ever. It was included this week as their number one in 'Things to do' - book now.
#stratforduponavon #stratfordliteraryfestival #lovestratforduponavon
Bookings now open to visit Shakespeares Birthplace
Book NOW to Visit Shakespeare's Birthplace
At last the booking system is open!
Book by clicking on the link with the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Prebooking is essential.
On Monday 17 May Shakespeare's Birthplace will once again be open to the public, with Anne Hathaway's Cottage and Shakespeare's New Place to reopen a month later on Monday 14 June. Explore the fascinating stories behind Shakespeare the boy, husband, family man and businessman right where it all began in Stratford-upon-Avon.
15% off their online shop
'Shakespeare's Birthplace Shop on Henley Street is now open, 7 days a week, 10am-4pm, we'd love to see you. If you are unable to visit us in Stratford-upon-Avon, you can still shop with us online. Here's a 15% discount code to say thank you for your continued support. Use HELLO15 at checkout. '
'To keep our visitors and staff safe we will be reopening at a reduced capacity. We have introduced a timed ticket system and all tickets will need to be booked in advance.' SBT
The love flows on with rocks with kind messages, hidden in shop windows in town, though the RSC's Kindness Shop in Bell Court's is no longer open.
Check out the photos to see the rocks and pick up a few clues on their locations. Let us know where you spot them. 😃 And if you need a clue or two just say!
There are 11 rocks to find in total.
The Kindness Shop was sponsored by Bell Court and Stratford Town Trust. See their brilliant window display in Bell Court, near Lush, until the end of May.
‘ART WARMING - by the RSC - Creativity and Kindness will get us through this
Join us as we collect stories of kindness and generosity with our local community. We want to remember all the little things that have seen us through a difficult year, and to turn this into a joyful artistic celebration in Stratford town centre. So come and visit artist Saadia Hipkiss, who will transform your message of hope and love into beautifully painted rocks to feature in our Kindness Shop.’
#stratforduponavon #kindnessrocks #kindnessrocksstratford #kindnessrocksproject #whatsonwarwickshire #lovestratforduponavon #thekindnessshop #shakespearesbirthday
Open! Come on in!
Open for business! Please come on in and enjoy shopping and hospitality outdoors.
There is a relaxed buoyant atmosphere as people gradually return to town. All venues are carefully reopening using social distancing measures so we all can feel safe.
Wonderful to see many familiar faces - you've been missed so much. Do Tag us in with #lovestratforduponavon for a share
#shoplocal #lovelocal #lovestratforduponavon
Friday Feeling - Updates
Friday Updates - And we are on the up!
Shops, indoor hospitality, indoor leisure and personal care will begin to open from Monday! YES!
And YES this will be the last Friday without the pub!
The Arts are Restarting
Keep in the know!
Official Covid Advice
Duke of Edinburgh
We are deeply saddened at news of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh. Our thoughts are with the Royal family at this time. On behalf of the Board, the members and staff of Stratforward BID.
Photo courtesy of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Taken when Prince Philip attended celebrations in Stratford-upon-Avon in 1964 to mark the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's birth