Latest Press Releases



Saturday 23 September 2017, 9am-5pm


Former RSC Rehearsal Rooms, Arden Street, Stratford-upon-Avon

(at the junction with Birmingham Rd)


Entry: £3, pay on the day (cash only)


The Royal Shakespeare Company will be holding a Costume Jumble Sale on Saturday 23 September 2017 at its former rehearsal rooms on Arden Street in Stratford-upon-Avon. 


Over 10,000 items, encompassing costumes, shoes, hats and accessories, will be available to purchase, with prices starting at just £1.  The sale, including uniforms, suits, shirts, doublets, shoes, jewellery and hats, will consist of a variety of period costumes, with a sizeable contemporary section. 


The garments in the sale, mainly made by the world-renowned RSC Costume Workshop, have been chosen from the RSC Costume Hire, which hires out RSC costumes once the productions they have featured in have ended.  The RSC needs to free up more space to make room for new costumes available to hire.


Items in the sale will come from RSC productions stretching back over the last 20 years, including Julius Caesar (2009), Othello (2015), The Two Noble Kinsmen (2016) and Cymbeline (2016).  Amongst the items on offer are uniform coats from the 2008 production of Hamlet, which featured David Tennant in the title role.


The RSC has the largest in-house costume-making department of any British theatre, employing 30 award-winning craftspeople. They are responsible for making the costumes for RSC productions seen by millions of people in Stratford and around the world.  Skills within the department range from men’s and ladies’ costume construction, armour making and millinery, to dyeing and printing. 


The RSC has plans to restore and redevelop its Costume Workshop, housed in an assortment of buildings on Waterside opposite the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, and money raised from the Costume Jumble Sale will go towards funding this. 


Alistair McArthur, RSC Head of Costume, said: “Costumes are an essential part of any production here at the RSC.  People are often surprised to learn that we create the vast majority of them ourselves in our costume workshops.  I am very proud of the talented team that makes the costumes: all of their skills, and the diverse range of costumes they make, will be reflected in the items in this Costume Jumble Sale.  At one of our previous sales someone found a pair of slippers worn by David Tennant when he played Hamlet here.  Most pieces are labelled with the name of the actor who originally wore them, so who knows what little gems people might pick up?”


Entry to the sale is £3 (pay on the day, cash only), and items can be purchased with cash or debit/credit card.  Customer parking is available nearby at the Stratford District Council pay and display car park on Arden Street. 


For further press information please contact:

Dean Asker, RSC Press Office
01789 412660



Notes to editors

Once an RSC production ends, most of the costumes are placed in to the Costume Hire. Some key items will be placed in the RSC Collection, ensuring that they are looked after so they can be enjoyed for future generations.  A rotating display of costumes from the RSC Collection can be seen in the RSC’s new permanent exhibition, The Play’s The Thing, in the Swan Wing area of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.


The Play’s the Thing exhibition is supported by the HERITAGE LOTTERY FUND and UBS


The Royal Shakespeare Company creates theatre at its best, made in Stratford-upon-Avon and shared around the world.  We produce an inspirational artistic programme each year, setting Shakespeare in context, alongside the work of his contemporaries and today’s writers.  


Everyone at the RSC - from actors to armourers, musicians to technicians - plays a part in creating the world you see on stage.  All our productions begin life at our Stratford workshops and theatres and we bring them to the widest possible audience through our touring, residencies, live broadcasts and online activity. So wherever you experience the RSC, you experience work made in Shakespeare’s home town.  


We have trained generations of the very best theatre makers and we continue to nurture the talent of the future. We encourage everyone to enjoy a lifelong relationship with Shakespeare and live theatre.  We reach 530,000 children and young people annually through our education work, transforming their experiences in the classroom, in performance and online.  Registered charity no. 212481


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