BT Planned Engineering Works

Due to more engineering works by BT all our online services will unfortunately be unavailable for two periods. The first will be from 00:01 until 06:00 on 18/02 and the second will be from 22:00 on 22/02 until 02:00 on 23/02. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Countdown to new look festival for Shakespeare's Birthday

Released on 24 October 2017 Press Release

Stratford News

Calling all Living Statues in Warwickshire and beyond!

In six months' time Stratford-upon-Avon will be buzzing with excitement and anticipation as the town embarks on a new era in marking Shakespeare's Birthday.

From 2018 celebrations will extend over three days and between 20th and 22nd April 2018 will feature a raft of exciting new entertainment and events throughout the town.

Key to the new festival is the launch of the UK's first National Living Statue Championship. Visitors to Stratford-upon-Avon will be able to wander through town and watch living statues perform for the crowds, culminating in the judging of the inaugural contest on Sunday afternoon.  Staging the event as part of the Shakespeare's Birthday Celebrations is a real coup for Stratford-upon-Avon; the UK Championship will attract many participants as well as visitors to the town over the festival weekend and is set to become an annual event alongside the traditional Birthday festivities. 

The National Living Statue Championship 2018 is being run by event organisers LSD Promotions, well known in Stratford for managing the town's markets.  The company will be working closely with Shakespeare's Celebrations, the local initiative led by Stratford-upon-Avon Town Council and Stratford-on-Avon District Council with support from key organisations in the town.

Cllr George Atkinson, Chairman of Stratford-on-Avon District Council, said: "Making the Birthday Celebrations financially sustainable by encouraging more visitors to come to the Festival is essential to Stratford and the surrounding area. Hosting the National Living Statue Championship here, seeing participants and visitors enjoy the Birthday Parade and other cultural and heritage attractions, stay in our hotels and guest houses and eat in our restaurants over the whole three day event is vital to our plans for future development of the Shakespeare's Celebrations experience."

Cllr Victoria Alcock, Mayor of Stratford-upon Avon, said: "We are delighted that Shakespeare's Celebrations will be working in partnership with LSD Promotions to bring plans for a vibrant new Birthday Festival to fruition. We are confident that a mix of brand new events alongside our well established Parade and traditions will go a long way towards assuring the continued success of the Celebrations."

Living statues - painted, costumed actors who might pose almost motionless for hours then surprise the audience with maybe a wave of an arm or doff of a hat - are tremendously popular, drawing crowds in cities all over the world. 

Dermot McGillicuddy, Director of LSD Promotions said: "We are proud to introduce the National Living Statue Championship to this country and to work with Shakespeare's Celebrations to make Stratford-upon-Avon its home. We are sure the response to the contest will be as enthusiastic as it is around the world, as clearly seen at the International Championship in the Netherlands this year.  Stratford-upon-Avon and the Birthday Celebrations weekend provide a perfect setting for these amazing living statues to demonstrate their craft to thousands of people over the three day carnival."

"Professional, amateur and junior statues are invited to enter the competition. There is no charge to enter and there are cash prizes to be won. Statues interested in entering the UK's very first national contest should email us at or call 01384 877336 for more information or an application form."

There will be more about Shakespeare's Birthday Celebrations 2018 in the coming months at


For information about the National Living Statue Championship 2018 visit  To obtain an application form, email or call 01384 877336  

Shakespeare's Celebrations is an initiative jointly led by Stratford-upon-Avon Town Council and Stratford-on-Avon District Council, working to safeguard the future of the Shakespeare Birthday Celebrations. Key organisations in Stratford-upon-Avon including the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, the Royal Shakespeare Company and Stratforward BID work with them.  Visit for more information.

Contact details

Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Stratford-on-Avon, Warwichshire,
CV37 6HX
Tel: 01789 267 575

Back to Current Press Releases
Last updated on 09/08/2017

Contact the Website Development team