Shakespeare, England and St George’s day.

This year April 23rd marks not just St George’s day but also the probable 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death.

On April 21st I am planning an evening in Wokingham to commemorate both events. I will organise readings from Shakespeare’s plays about England, write something myself about Shakespeare’s love of our country, and intersperse it with Elizabethan and Jacobean music.

The present aim is to combine the readings and music with a traditional English dinner. If anyone is interested in joining us please contact Office@WokinghamConservatives.org.uk for tickets.
If anyone wishes to make use of the materials for an event elsewhere then that may be possible. Someone may like to organise one for St George’s day itself. Please let me know.

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19 Comments

  1. Posted February 14, 2016 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    Great but alas I am limited on my days spent in the UK. Also thank to Osborne (and this hugely over regulating government) I am rather too busy dealing with the endlessly increasing tax complexity and rates, the bonkers employment regulations, daft work place pensions, his pension cap and cont. mugging, the non deduction of landlord interest, the extra 3% stamp duties and endless other red tape and costs that are constantly lumped on to SME’s to render them uncompetitive. Thus killing the cow from which Osborne feeds.

    I suppose it depends on what your idea of a Traditional English Dinner is? Hopefully Roast Beef on the bone with horse radish. English “champagne” is fine but can they find any decent English red wines? I am not very keen on mead, maybe stick to decent some Kentish or Suffolk beers.

    Lots of spit-roasted meat, grilled beavers’ tails, whale meat (plenty in Norfolk I understand), whole roasted peacock, internal organs, black pudding, boar’s head, roasted swan, marzipan, spiced fruitcake, wine and ale. Sounds good to me, but doubtless health and safety, fire and other EU regulations will prevent or limit it.

    I suppose Cameron types will insist that you ensure the event is “inclusive” so you will perhaps have to have endless food options to cater for all the interesting religious beliefs & minorities. Make sure you get enough BME present or rather like our top universities admissions officers you might be accused of racism by Cameron.

    • Posted February 14, 2016 at 6:50 am | Permalink

      Rather a shame, as I rather enjoy Elizabethan and Jacobean music too, and the much underrated recorder and recorder consorts.

      • Posted February 14, 2016 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

        JR, could you write a twist that Shakspeare wanted the UK to stay in the EU! In fact, was it not his motivation to write plays?

  2. Posted February 14, 2016 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    Good for you, Mr Redwood!

  3. Posted February 14, 2016 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    Carn’t wait till next years bank holiday for Independence Day on June 23th ?

  4. Posted February 14, 2016 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    Would love to be there .If I am not working I may come down in Elizabethan dress.

  5. Posted February 14, 2016 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    JR, my darling wife has a message for you:-

    “Dr Redwood, why don’t you take the day off? My husband says you’ll have a busy week ahead of you.

    Why not come here and go for a walk in the woods (sorry, no Californian Redwood trees here) with my husband and talk culture, and then watch England in the Stadio Olimpico? I’ll chill some Prosecco for you both, or you could have a nice Barolo if you prefer?”

    Nice woman, my wife. We wish you a relaxing Sunday, JR.

    Reply Thanks. I would find the travel hassle far from relaxing.

  6. Posted February 14, 2016 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    What a wonderful idea, Dr JR; wish I lived in Wokingham and could be there. I also wish you were my MP – or better still my PM!

    • Posted February 14, 2016 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

      My wife and I agree wholeheartedly with M Davis above. Unfortunately we cant get there easily from here (rural Ontario).
      JR for PM!!!

  7. Posted February 14, 2016 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Dr.JR I commend your choice of culture and wish you the best for a glorious St. George’s Day ; “England expects all the best from you”.

  8. Posted February 14, 2016 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Upon a Brexit do you think we could make 21st April a fixed Public Holiday (Bank Holiday if it fails on a weekday) in place of the movable early May BH, although reading some of the comment on this site over the last few days I suspect many would prefer 8th May…

  9. Posted February 14, 2016 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    A very good idea, but unfortunately being near Witney I am rather too far away to travel easily. Never mind, I will write to my local MP to see if he is arranging something similar.

    • Posted February 14, 2016 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

      Touche.

  10. Posted February 14, 2016 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Our much revered St George travelled a lot. He is celebrated on April 23rd. in Catalonia where he used an alias, Sant Jordi or for some San Jorge. He is known throughout those countries bordering the Mediterranean. As he is reputed to have died in 303AD. He certainly got about a bit without the benefit of Eurostar or EasyJet.

    As the patron saint of England it would be nice to see him celebrated more formally in England. Perhaps it could be conjoined with the day of celebration of our independence from the EU.

    In Catalonia, another independent thinking place, it is traditional to present your loved one with red roses. As to Shakespeare, his travels seemed confined to his writing, nevertheless a worthy pairing, as he saw fit to give St George a strong mention in Henry V.

    Enjoy the day.

  11. Posted February 14, 2016 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    An excellent project. I hope it will be a resounding success.

  12. Posted February 14, 2016 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

    Alas many foreigners are now better versed in our literature, history and language than I and my fellow countrymen are.

    A deliberate act of cultural destruction brought through the comprehensive system of un-education.

  13. Posted February 14, 2016 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    Well done Mr Redwood.What pity there are not a few more English Patriots in Westminster.
    Next move an English Parliament!

  14. Posted February 14, 2016 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    Your St. George’s Day celebrations sounds delightful. I hope your secretary notifies the Press. Little touches like this can mean a lot to many people UK wide. Cheers to one and all.

  15. Posted February 14, 2016 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

    2nd February 2016 Mr Donald Tusk EUco (?) President tweeted: ” To be, or not to be together, that is the question… My proposal for a new settlement ”

    Due to Mr Cameron’s stompingly good negotiating successes for which we owe him so very much, Mr Tusk was obviously quoting from the great playwright of the North-Western European Union : Herr Wilhelm Schvakespeer.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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