Shropshire Star

Wem sets out to celebrate Shakespeare and Midsummer Magic

A north Shropshire town is gearing up for a unique celebration of Midsummer magic and Shakespeare in the middle of June.


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Many of Wem's shops are planning to decorate their windows around a theme of the summer solstice and the Shakespeare pay A Midsummer Night's Dream, and there will be fairies to find in shop windows.

There will also be an event in the historic St Peter & Paul's Church at 7pm on June 21.

This special evening invites local residents to share their love of Shakespeare's work.

Tim Ashton, of Soulton Hall, which has been linked to the Shakespeare character Old Sir Rowland, said participants are encouraged to prepare a short reading from a play or sonnet, followed by a brief discussion about its personal meaning and what they find particularly captivating about Shakespeare's writing style.

"Whether you're a seasoned Shakespearean scholar or simply enjoy the beauty of his language, all are welcome to participate in a relaxed evening to celebrate the Bard's timeless work and connect with fellow enthusiasts," he said.

The Shakespearean Midsummer Night's Celebration coincides with the sunrise opening of the Soulton Long Barrow on the dawn of the summer solstice, offering a quiet and beautiful moment for all to share experience of the longest day of the year.

Back in March Wem Town Council put out a call to celebrate midsummer and begin work on celebrating the emerging links of the area to Shakespeare via its celebrated Tudor neighbour Sir Rowland Hill.

The town has expressed a desire to deepen its summer cultural programming around mid-summer in the years ahead.