The witching hour strikes! – Half term fun at Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and caldron bubble.
Macbeth Act IV, scene I
In William Shakespeare’s Macbeth there were three witches, but when you visit Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall at Half Term there is a coven of witches to be found. This new trail has been created by Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall’s volunteers and is a fascinating and fun new way for families to explore the building, which this year celebrates its 600th anniversary.
The inspiration for the witch themed trail comes from the witches’ marks that are visible on one of the internal walls of the building, which it is believed could date back to early to mid 15th century. Witches’ symbols are described as being ‘apotropaic’, which comes from the Greek word for averting evil. The etchings, which can take a number of different forms, were intended to protect people from witches and evil spirits and as a result are often found at entrance points. The ones that visitors to Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall will see are near a window of the upper floor.
This trail is a great new addition to the family friendly experiences that await visitors to Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & Guildhall. Central to a visit is the opportunity to join the School Master, Master Thomas Jenkins, in the Schoolroom and take part in a Tudor lesson, just as the world’s greatest playwright would have done. You can follow this by spending time in the adjacent Georgian classroom with quill writing, puzzles and Tudor dress up and games.