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PM asked to create national day commemorating Shakespeare

The PM has been urged to create a national day to commemorate the birth of Shakespeare Credit: PA Wire

David Cameron has been urged to create a national day to commemorate the birth of playwright William Shakespeare.

The 450th anniversary of Shakespeare's birth has been celebrated in recent days, leading to the MP for Stratford-upon-Avon to make the request to the prime minister.

Mr Cameron disclosed to MPs that he was inspired and driven on by Henry V's speech before the Battle of Agincourt.

Shakespeare's house in Stratford-upon-Avon Credit: ITV News Central

In a lengthy question which appeared to have taken inspiration from Shakespeare's works, Conservative MP Nadhim Zahawi referred to the Prime Minister as he said:

"Could this right honourable man, the captain of our state, lend his help to make our national poet's birth a national day, and could he disclose before the House what Shakespeare means to him?"

Mr Cameron replied: "Can I thank you for that beautifully and brilliantly crafted question about the anniversary of Shakespeare's birth.

It is a moment for celebration, not just here in Britain but all across the world, where Shakespeare's works are getting a wider and wider understanding and distribution.

I won't attempt the quotes you have brought out in your question.

But I would say to any politician, if you read Henry V's speech before Agincourt - if that doesn't inspire and drive you on, I can't think what does."

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'Shakespeare's Church' bell ringing celebrations

Bell ringers at the Holy Trinity church in Stratford are taking part in Shakespeare's 450th birthday celebrations.

The church itself is known as 'Skakespeare's Church', as it is where he was baptised. He is also buried within the chancel.

Ringing Master, Charles Wilson, explains some of the history of bell ringing at the church.

Shakespeare's Birthday celebrations

William Shakespeare turns 450 today
William Shakespeare turns 450 today Credit: PA

Celebrations are starting today in Stratford-upon-Avon for William Shakespeare's birthday. The famous playwright was born in the town in 1564.

The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) will celebrate Shakepeare's 450th birthday with a firework display from the top of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre after the evening performance of Henry IV, Part 1.

The celebrations will continue over the weekend offering a range of free family theatre activities including stage fighting workshops and blood, guts and gore make-up classes.

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Midlands author's classics to be sold at auction

The first edition of Tolkien's 'The Hobbit' Credit: Bonhams Auctioneers

A first edition of JRR Tolkien's 'The Hobbit', and a third folio edition of William Shakespeare's 'Comedies, Histories and Tragedies' go under the hammer today.

Auctioneers, Bonhams, expect both works by the Midlands writers to be sold for between £10,000 and £15,000.

Shakespeare's 'Comedies, Histories and Tragedies' Credit: Bonhams Auctioneers

Stratford-upon-Avon: best place for online business

Hall's Croft in Stratford-upon-Avon, 17th Century home of William Shakespeare's eldest daughter Credit: PA

William Shakespeare's home town of Stratford-upon-Avon has topped a table of towns and cities embracing online business.

Companies in Stratford are the best at using the internet to attract customers and orders, according to research commissioned by Google.

The town has been named as the internet giant's eTown Award winner, following research into 1,300 towns and cities across the UK.

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