Shakespeare’s Birthday Parade, the centrepiece of annual celebrations marking the birthday of Stratford-upon-Avon’s famous son, is a real spectacle for the crowds who line the streets to watch the procession.
Civic dignitaries, invited guests from around the globe and the literary and theatrical world, students and staff of Shakespeare’s own place of learning, King Edward’s School, as well as other local schools follow the time-honoured route through the streets to the great playwright and poet’s last resting place at Holy Trinity Church, where flowers are laid in remembrance and celebration of his notable life.
This year’s festivities will see marching bands, the traditional handing over of the quill and the flag unfurling ceremony as well as tickertape explosions on Bridge Street as the Parade moves off towards the Church. A sonnet penned by the Bard will be presented to spectators lining the route. One lucky person will be fortunate to receive the ‘Golden Sonnet’ which brings with it a great prize and there will be other winners too.
As well as the Birthday Parade, there will be entertainment and activities for all the family taking place around Stratford-upon-Avon from the Royal Shakespeare Company and at the Shakespeare's Family Houses, many of them outdoors and mostly free of charge. You can also visit Shakespeare's Schoolroom and Guildhall.
View the full programme of events over the Birthday weekend in Stratford here What's on guide Shakespeare Birthday 2017.docx