Go-ahead for Shakespeare College & Theatre in Prescot
A planning application for the building of a Shakespearean theatre and educational facility in Prescot town centre has been successful.
If the £26m build goes ahead, it will include a 350-seat period theatre, similar to London’s Globe, and a college dedicated to William Shakespeare and the importance of Elizabethan theatre in the region. Schoolchildren, local residents and post-graduate students would be among those to benefit from the educational facility.
Prescot was chosen because it was once the site of the late 17th-century Prescot Playhouse – the first and perhaps most important freestanding theatre outside London.
The Fifth Earl of Derby, whose family seat to this day is Knowsley Hall in Prescot, was among the Bard’s rich patrons.
If fundraising is successful, Shakespeare North hope to be able to open the facility in 2019. Where the Prescot Playhouse stood near the east end of Eccleston Street, the earmarked site for the new theatre and college is on the current Mill Street Car Park, between the Old Mill pub and Prescot Bus Station.
Pictured: Shakespeare North supporters and actors from MATE Productions celebrate the successful planning application at Knowsley Council HQ in Huyton yesterday (Thursday 21 April).