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Shakespeare Memorial Theatre

"O for a muse of fire" - or not, as Shakespeare's Memorial Theatre in Stratford is gutted by flames.

Non-Fiction 1926 1 mins Silent


Twisted metal and smoking ashes greet the fireman of Stratford as they deal with the aftermath of a mighty blaze. The fire gutted the original Shakespeare Memorial Theatre; the carnage inside unfortunately gives little idea of the original seating or stage. But shots of the exterior reveal the shell which became the Swan Theatre in 1986, and remains part of the refurbished Royal Shakespeare Theatre complex today.

The newsreel item's intertitles bill the theatre as being in its jubilee year, but this is perhaps 50 years after the foundations were laid - the grand opening was on the 19th April 1879.