Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre to enter liquidation

Credit: Lunchbox Theatrical Productions

Shakespeare’s Rose  Theatre – which has attracted and entertained thousands of people in York over the last two summers – is set to go into liquidation.

A spokesperson said the company, run by Lunchbox Theatrical Productions, has suffered “unsustainable losses” from its recent seasons in York and at Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire.

“With much sadness and regret, a board meeting has been held to start the liquidation process for Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre,” the spokesman told the York Press.

They went on to say that productions staged this year “were greeted with great acclaim by audiences and critics alike” but that “sadly, due to Brexit and the economic and political uncertainty this has created, the anticipated audience numbers needed to sustain a project of this scale were not achieved.”

The firm’s inaugural season in 2018 attracted 80,000 visitors to York. This led to Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre once again being constructed as a pop up at the foot of Clifford’s Tower in the historic city from Tuesday 25 June to Sunday 1 September this year.

This year, the theatre achieved only 47,000 visitors in York and 38,000 at Blenheim Palace.

Different plays were performed this year in York compared to last and were Hamlet, Henry V, The Tempest and Twelfth Night.

Each performance house an audience of 900; the 13-sided scaffolding theatre offered three tiers of covered seating for 560 around an open courtyard for 340 standing ‘groundlings’.

The theatre has won a raft of tourism awards and had been sponsored by companies including Grand Central, Fenwick, The Grand Hotel and York Designer Outlet.

The company also runs Thor’s Tipi and said this would be unaffected.