New-format Globe Theatre tours to start on 21 August

  From this August, our much-missed wooden ‘O’ opens its oak doors once more

3 minute read

After previously closing our doors to the public back in March, today we are excited to announce that our new season of theatre tours will start on 21 August 2020.

As well as hearing about William Shakespeare, the history of London and the theatre itself, visitors to our award-winning Globe Theatre Guided Tour will also have the chance to stand on one of the most famous stages in the world.

Our family-friendly tours are for all ages and there are a range of ticket prices, including a special ‘pay what you can’ rate and free tickets for NHS staff.

A stage sits in an open-air, circular theatre

The new-format Globe Theatre Guided Tours start on 21 August 2020. Photographer: Marc Brenner.

“Reopening our wonderful tours, giving access to the stage to our visitors for the first time, and the opening of our online shop and the Swan Bar & Restaurant are all ways in which we hope to welcome more and more people back through our doors to safely enjoy culture and experience in our iconic space once again.”

– Neil Constable, Chief Executive, Shakespeare’s Globe

Both an exhibit of costumes worn by celebrated actors and a new photography display by Marc Brenner will form part of the new tour.

Marc has recently captured our empty spaces through a series of beautiful never-before-seen photos of Shakespeare’s Globe, and a selection of them will be on show in this special on site exhibition.

Tiered seating of a wooden theatre with a thatched roof

A selection of Marc Brenner’s photography will be on display and includes unseen images of scenes backstage at Shakespeare’s Globe.

A wooden theatre seen through a gap in the door

Members can get up to two £10 tickets for the new tour. Photographer: Marc Brenner.

Tours will be running seven days a week with tickets bookable up to 20 September 2020. Tickets must be booked in advance online so don’t forget to secure your time-slot in plenty of time.

For this new season of tours, Members priority booking will open Wednesday 19 August at 11.00am and public booking will open Thursday 20 August 10.00am. If you become a Member you will benefit from not just priority booking but also a special £10 ticket rate.

Members also receive a 20% discount in our online shop.

We have worked hard to adapt our new-format tour for you at this time – we have adjusted the tour route, opening hours and the number of tickets available per tour.

We want you to feel confident and comfortable when visiting us and we are taking all the necessary COVID-19 safety measures. From guidance on social distancing, to advanced cleaning, face shields for staff and more, you can read all of our Coronavirus safety measures online ahead of your visit.

We’ve also published a handy step-by-step guide so you can benefit from a walk-through of where to go and what to do. We know it can be a big step visiting places in a new post-lockdown landscape and, especially if this is your first time visiting Shakespeare’s Globe, we want to ensure that you feel guided and well looked after.

A woman wearing a mask is greeted by a woman behind a plastic screen

We have published a step-by-step online guide of what to expect from visiting us at this time. There is also an in-depth COVID-19 safety page on this website to explore should you require further detail.

Whilst we’re on the subject of things reopening… we are delighted to share that our online shop is back up and running, and the Swan Bar & Restaurant has reopened – taking reservations online and trying to accommodate you ‘on the day’ if they can.

With their new opening times, new menus and a new COVID-19 safety policy, the staff at Swan are ready to welcome you back into their beautiful spaces (they are also taking part in Eat Out to Help Out).

A barman in a red shirt pours a cocktail

The Swan Bar is now open 7 days a week.

A barman in a red shirt pours a cocktail

Swan are taking reservations and you can book online via our website or theirs.

Alongside this exciting announcement, we must remind you that we are not completely ‘reopening’. All other indoor spaces at Shakespeare’s Globe remain closed to the public, like our Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Cafe, on-site Shop, Box Office and most of our staff offices. Our Globe Theatre remains closed for performances.

The spread of COVID-19 and our subsequent closure in March stopped all of our work in its tracks. We have continued to provide online education and entertainment to many during the pandemic, but we still need your help to secure our future.

We look forward to welcoming you back to our theatre for these tours, but as an organisation that generates 95% of income from theatre tickets and other on-site activities, as a company that has been losing nearly £2 million a month during the Coronavirus crisis, we have relied on your support to get us through this challenging time.

We ask that, if you can, please donate or become a Member.

An empty office filled with desks

Marc Brenner captures our silent spaces backstage.

Empty hangers on a clothes rail

Photographer: Marc Brenner.

You can also support us in other ways. Especially those following our work from overseas can engage with the work we have been providing online.

Our video-on-demand platform Globe Player, for example, continues to be a destination for those looking to buy or rent videos of Shakespeare productions.

Our new online events programmes – which will soon include our recently-announced Shakespeare and Race festival with events starting on 21 August – has seen people from all over the world attend events, courses and discussions online from home.

Families have also been joining us for the Telling Tales workshops and storytelling sessions and there are still a few dates remaining for those who have missed out.

A camera is recording

Events that form part of Shakespeare and Race will be online and have been filmed in our candlelit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. The festival has a limited number of events running from 21 – 23 August 2020.

Tall skyscraper buildings in the distance

We will meet you in our wooden ‘O’ once again. Photographer: Marc Brenner.

Whether you’re visiting us for a tour, watching an event from afar or listening to one of our podcasts, thank you for connecting with us during this journey and we look forward to taking this next step with you.


Globe Theatre Guided Tours start on 21 August and slots must be booked in advance. The Swan Bar & Restaurant is open for reservations and our online shop is now open.


After the most challenging year in our charity’s history, we still need our supporters to help us recover.

Please donate to help fund the future of Shakespeare’s Globe.