2018 Birthday Parade
The Shakespeare’s Birthday Parade is an event that everyone can enjoy as it winds its way through the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon. It passes buildings and places that were part of his life and ends where he was finally laid to rest, in Holy Trinity Church, on the banks of the river Avon.
The 2018 Celebrations Parade Route will start from Chapel Lane and make its way along Waterside and up Bridge Street to the flag stations. Following the flag unfurling, the parade will move off along High Street, Chapel Street, Church Street and Old Town to end at Holy Trinity Church.
|Approx. Timing||Shakespeare Birthday Celebrations
Procession & Flag Unfurling Ceremony
Saturday 21 April 2018
|10:15am||The Shakespeare Birthday Celebration commences with the KES School Parade followed by the Primary Schools processing from Waterside through the Arena to Holy Trinity Church, led by the Coventry Corps of Drums and the ATC Band:|
|10:35am||The West Midlands Fire Service Band will lead civic dignitaries, diplomats and other invited guests in procession from Waterside Parade route: Waterside, Bridge Street and High Street;|
|10:50am||The Lord Lieutenant will place a wreath below the bust of Shakespeare, situated in front of the Dais:|
|10:57am||Tony Bird and young achiever of the year, Sophie Evans-Lee, will unfurl the Big Birthday Banner, accompanied by a Drum Roll.|
|10:58am||Ceremonial Fanfare – Lord Lieutenant unfurls the Union Flag, followed by all other flags simultaneously:|
|11:00am||The National Anthem will immediately follow;|
|11:02am||Shakespeare’s Birthday Cake arrives in the arena. The Band will play ‘Happy Birthday’, each line is interspersed by the firing of confetti cannons.|
|11:04am||The Cake makes a triumphant circuit of Bridge Street, and the Town Criers lead ‘Three Cheers for William Shakespeare’;|
|11:10am||The Literary Community Carnival Pageant enters Bridge Street, each group introduced by the Compere, Michael Collie;|
|11:12am||Shakespeare hands a Quill to the leader of each group, as they pass;|
|11:45am||The winners of the Pageant are announced by the Mayor and presented with a cheque for £500.00 courtesy of sole pageant sponsor Bell Court;|
|11:50am||From Bridge Street, the WMFS Band will then lead the Parade to Holy Trinity Church, via High Street, Chapel Street, Church Street and Old Town;|
|12:15pm||Parade participants will pass through Holy Trinity Church, depositing flowers at Shakespeare’s grave;|
|The Parade is now over;|
|Community festivities and street entertainment take place throughout the town.|
Throughout the day
Community festivities and street entertainment take place throughout the town.
Sunday 22 April 2018
|10:00am||Reception at the Town Hall from 10:00am onwards (by invitation);|
|10:00am||Mr Shakespeare will process from the Birthplace with the Quill, accompanied by Drummers;|
|10:15am||The Quill arrives at the Town Hall, and is handed over to the KES Head Boy who will take it to church;|
|10:50am||The Civic Procession from the Town Hall to Holy Trinity Church via Chapel Street, Church Street, Old Town;|
|11:15am||Divine Service in Holy Trinity Church. The Quill will be ceremoniously received, and subsequently placed in the hand of the effigy of Shakespeare overlooking his grave;|
|The final blessing of The Shakespeare Service places a finite note on the 454th Shakespeare Birthday Celebrations, 2018;
|Community festivities and street entertainment takes place throughout the town, including the National Living Statue Competition. Statues will be on display on the Bancroft Gardens on Friday evening, Saturday and Sunday. The winner will be announced at 4:00pm on Waterside.|
The timings shown are approximate and details were correct at the time of going to press, but nonetheless are subject to change.
We hope you enjoy the occasion.
Please join us again in 2019, on the weekend of 27 and 28 April