Largely thanks to the efforts of the American filmmaker, Sam Wanamaker, the new Globe theatre was opened to the public in 1997

It has been re-built as close as possible to the original theatre’s design, from the thatched roof to the wooden bench seating.

The original Globe Theatre was built not far from this site, in 1598. Shakespeare and his fellow actors brought it over from the other side of the Thames (Shoreditch) in pieces and reassembled it on bankside since land rent was cheaper.

Many of Shakespeare’s most famous plays were performed in the original theatre on bankside, including Julius Caesar (believed to be the first play performed here), Henry V, Hamlet and Macbeth. The plays attracted lively audiences and Elizabeth I was often amongst them.

In 1613, during a performance of Henry VIII, the theatre’s thatch caught fire during the firing of a real cannon. The theatre burnt down within half an hour and was re-built the following year. In the 1640’s it was finally closed down and demolished by the Puritans.

The iron gates which lead into the theatre’s grounds contain sculptures of many animals from Shakespeare’s various plays.

You can visit it on the cultural walk.

click to view map and street view