Take a closer look at one of the fantastic attractions included with the Explorer Pass each month with our monthly feature Explore. Find out all about what the attraction has to offer and everything you need to know to plan a visit.
This month we are exploring the childhood home of William Shakespeare’s mother at Mary Arden’s Farm which has just re-opened for the 2020 season.
Experience the sights, sounds and smells of a working Tudor farm on a fantastic family day out.
Animals and Nature
Mary Arden’s Farm was the childhood home of William Shakespeare’s mother Mary Arden. The farmhouse was built by Mary’s father, Robert Arden, in 1514 and the family lived at the site during the 16th century. Mary lived there for the first 20 years of her life before marrying John Shakespeare in 1557 and moving to Stratford-upon-Avon.
The site was purchased in the 1930s by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, the independent charity that cares for the world’s greatest Shakespeare heritage sites in his home town of Stratford-upon-Avon.
Abi Moore, Mary Arden’s Farm site manager, said, “Our resident Tudors give visitors a perfect opportunity to see for themselves what daily rural life was like in Tudor England for Mary Arden, Shakespeare’s mother. They can experience the sights, sounds and smells of the farm life that Mary grew up in before marrying and starting her own family in town.”
Mary Arden’s Farm has so much to offer visitors – not only can you explore the home that Shakespeare’s mother grew up in, you can also meet the resident Tudors as they go about their daily tasks on the farm and in the home, as Shakespeare’s mother would have; learn about table manners and dining rituals; and find out about traditional crafts — enjoy demonstrations and even have a go yourself in one of the regular hands-on sessions throughout the year. A fantastic opportunity see and imagine what life must have been like during Tudor England!
The farm is also home to a wide selection of animals and rare breeds including cattle, pigs, goats, ducks and chickens. The new for 2020 farm talks and mini tours will introduce visitors to the animals and demonstrate hand sheep shearing, hoof trimming and donkey and pony grooming. They also have regular birds of prey displays – demonstrating the age-old art of falconry, a popular tudor pastime.
The 23-acre site is a great place for children to burn off some energy – follow the woodland trail to the viewing tower to enjoy spectacular views and enjoy the outdoor play area and willow tunnel.
And if all that makes you a little peckish the farm cafe offers a selection of fresh meals and snacks that have received a Gold standard Food for Life Award from the Soil Association. Enjoy sandwiches with artisan breads, Tudor-inspired specials and healthy children’s lunchboxes. You can even sample organic meat fresh from the farm! Picnic tables are available around the site too if you prefer to pack your own lunch.
14 – 29 March: 10am – 4pm
30 March – 25 October: 10am – 5pm
26 October – 1 November: 10am – 4pm
2 November 2020 CLOSED
Tel: 01789 338535