Shakespeare's Stratford on the Web
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The half-timbered house where William Shakespeare was born in 1564 is Stratford's most cherished historic place. It is the most frequently visited of all the tourist places. Descendants of the dramatist lived there until the nineteenth century, and it has been a place of pilgrimage for over 250 years.
Open daily, tours start in The Birthplace which contains an acclaimed exhibition of the poet's life, William Shakespeare: His Life and Background They then carry on through the house, which is furnished in period style with many historic manuscripts and books. Finally the tour ends outside in the celebration garden.
The house itself poses problems for access, due to the requirement to preserve the historical context of its period listed features. However, access by wheelchair to the modern Visitors Centre and its exhibition, is largely unrestricted. The accessible toilet facilities are situated on the left as you enter the centre, after the payment kiosk. Access from the Street to this flat and level entrance, is via a pedestrianised area (nearest disabled parking and accessible toilets - Windsor Street). Visitors should be aware of areas of dim lighting within the exhibition, required for the conservation of historic artifacts. Access to the house itself is via a large step in the entrance. There is uneven flooring throughout the building. A flight of steep stairs leads to the first floor. There is mostly flat access in the garden. There is flat and level access to toilet facilities in the Visitors Centre. The toilets in the gardens are reached via two steps. There are plans for improved accessibility in the future, in the meantime staff are eager to assist where required.
Henley Street (Tel. 01789 204016)