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The Black Country Meets the Bard: Shakespeare's First Folio visits Black Country Living Museum


In celebration of Shakespeare’s first Folio visiting Black Country Living Museum (BCLM), the Black Country Studies Centre (BCSC) are challenging local schools, colleges, and the public to create their own sonnet, inspired by both Shakespeare and the individuality of the Black Country.

On Saturday 14 May, Black Country Living Museum will be celebrating Shakespeare’s First Folio visiting the Museum as part of the ‘Everything to Everybody’ project. The Folio will be fully and freely accessible all day, including a range of interactive workshops and talks from University of Wolverhampton experts taking place, honouring Shakespeare’s impact on modern society.

To celebrate the Folio’s visit, the BCSC are working with the Museum to host a competition, encouraging local schools, colleges, and the public to create their own sonnet, inspired by both Shakespeare and the individuality of the Black Country – get writing and you could win a family ticket to Black Country Living Museum!

The Folio’s visit and competition are part of the ‘Everything to Everybody’ Project – an ambitious three-year celebration of one of the UK’s most important cultural assets, the vast Shakespeare Memorial Library housed within the Library of Birmingham. ‘Everything to Everybody’ aims to give the city’s unique Shakespeare heritage back to the people and is a collaboration between the University of Birmingham and Birmingham City Council, with funding also contributed by National Lottery Heritage Fund and History West Midlands.

Join in BCLM's Poetry Competition  

BCLM is asking you to compose a poem expressing your appreciation for the Black Country. The competition has been launched with prize categories for a primary school, secondary school, college/sixth form and public winner! Primary school entries are welcome to contribute any form of poem, while entries in other categories should take Shakespeare’s illustrious Sonnet form. The most unique poem will win a family ticket to the Museum, and school-aged entries will also win a Black Country goodie bag for their school! To support the competition, Author, Poet and University of Wolverhampton Lecturer Dr Robert Francis has worked alongside the Museum, helping to support the school-aged entries. Black Country Living Museum is grateful to have had his support in creating a virtual sonnet workshop to support sonnet-writing at a younger age.


BCLM kindly ask for all school-age entries to be emailed to, and all public entries to be emailed to, by 11:59pm on Tuesday 31st May 2022. Entries must use the subject line ‘Shakespeare poetry competition’. Each Entry must contain: the final draft of the author’s poem along with the author’s name (school, and year group must also be provided for school-age entries).

Good Luck – and get writing!

Click here for more information and T&Cs.


For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.

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