Stratford-upon-Avon is well worth the short journey from the University campus. Birthplace to William Shakespeare, and historic market town, Stratford has a lot to offer everyone.
Distance from campus:
Eating-out is particularly enjoyable in Stratford, and there are many and varied bars and pubs too. A long summer evening can be spent on the banks of the beautiful river Avon and half-an-hours boat hire is always fun.
However, Stratford is famous for theatre and is home to the Royal Shakespeare Company. The RSC owns three theatres in Stratford: The Royal Shakespeare Theatre, The Swan and The Other Place.
Stratford-upon-Avon has a small but good shopping centre in the centre of town, and there are a number of main high-street stores such as H&M, New Look, Next, Marks and Spencers, Dorothy Perkins and Debenhams. Because of the tourist attraction of the town, the shopping centre also contains a large number of gift shops. If you are lucky, you will also catch the regular market in the town.
Stratford-upon-Avon is one of the UK’s most popular tourist towns and place of historical interest thanks to its association with playwright William Shakespeare.
William Shakespeare was born in a house on Henley Street in Straford-upon-Avon in 1564. As a boy he attended the Stratford Grammar School, and later married Anne Hathaway, a local woman. He later fled to London to pursue a career as an actor, theatre-owner and playwright. He returned to Stratford in his latter years where he died at the age of 52 and was buried in the Holy Trinity Church.
There are many remaining historic buildings associated with William Shakespeare in and around Stratford-upon-Avon. Shakespeare's Birthplace on Henley Street is now open to the public, accompanied by an exhibition of his life.
New Place is the house where Shakespeare lived until his death in 1616. Although the house no longer exists, the foundations and grounds may be visited accompanied by period furnishings and an exhibition in Nash’s House.
Anne Hathaway’s Cottage is another popular attraction, containing some of the furniture that belonged to the Hathaway family.
You can also visit Mary Arden's Farm, the house of Shakespeare’s mother, which is just outside of Stratford. It is home to a Shakespeare museum and other historic items from the 16th century onwards.
You can purchase tickets to visit each of the places associated with Shakespeare through the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.
Finally, the Holy Trinity Church may also be visited today, containing a monument to William Shakespeare.
Stratford is of historic interest in its own right, being home to splendid architecture from across the centuries, and containing some of the most beautiful gardens in Warwickshire. Stratford-upon-Avon was originally a medieval market-town, so it’s history dates back much further than the birth of Shakespeare.
Access from University:
By car: Stratford-upon-Avon may be reached by a short journey up the A46 from the University. Stratford is well sign-posted along the main roads and the journey takes around 25 minutes.
By bus: The Stagecoach X16 travels between campus and Stratford-upon-Avon. Check the Stagecoach website for more information about service times.
By train: Trains travel from Leamington Spa station to Stratford-upon-Avon station approximately every 1-2 hours. The journey takes 25-30 minutes.