Theatre in the Forest is moving back to its roots and taking up residency in partnership with the National Trust at one of the most stunning and atmospheric sites in the country, Sutton Hoo.
Sutton Hoo is the beautiful site of the Anglo-Saxon burial ground as featured in the Netflix film ‘The Dig’, boasting hauntingly beautiful views over the River Deben – the perfect backdrop for a magical evening enjoying Shakespeare as the sun goes down and the stars appear!
Where will your favourite seat be?
Bring your own seats and set up camp in BOHEMIA or choose from our tiered seating in PERDITA, FLORIZEL, MOPSA, SICILY and DORCAS!
As always, access for our diverse audiences is our priority. Together with the National Trust, we are making the Theatre in the Forest experience better and more accessible than ever before.
The path from the car park to the venue is approx 200m across a field. The path is flat but there may be some bumpy bits! All terrain wheelchairs are available at the box office to use, as well our team of volunteers to help you on the night!
There are plenty of close-up parking spaces, accessible toilets
Wheelchair-accessible spaces are available in the front row of our tiered seating, accompanied by a companion or carer seat. To book online, log in to your account or register to update your access preferences and enable booking wheelchair-accessible spaces online. Or you can call our box office team on 01473 603388 to book your tickets.
Wheelchair-accessible spaces are also available in our on-the-ground seating. Once in your checkout, Please fill out our access reservation page when you book online to reserve a wheelchair-accessible space.
If you have any other access requirements and need to reserve a specific space in our on-the-ground seating, DUNSINANE, Once in your checkout please ensure you tick the options you want in the Additional Details when you book online.
Set your Accessibility Preferences in your account
If you need a wheelchair-accessible space or close-up parking, Create or login to your account to make sure your accessibility requirements are set in “OTHER PREFERENCES”.
About Sutton Hoo
Sutton Hoo, near Woodbridge in Suffolk, is one of the most important archaeological sites in the world and the 7th-century burial mounds, excavated from the late 1930s onwards, have revealed items including the iconic Sutton Hoo helmet that have helped shape our understanding of the origins of English history. Mrs Edith Pretty, the landowner, donated the finds to the British Museum in 1939.
Credit: National Trust
About the National Trust
The National Trust is a conservation charity founded in 1895 by three people: Octavia Hill, Sir Robert Hunter and Hardwicke Rawnsley, who saw the importance of the nation’s heritage and open spaces and wanted to preserve them for everyone to enjoy. Today, across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, we continue to look after places so people and nature can thrive.
The challenges of the coronavirus pandemic have shown this is more important than ever. From finding fresh air and open skies to tracking a bee’s flight to a flower; from finding beauty in an exquisite painting or discovering the hidden history of a country house nearby – the places we care for enrich people’s lives.
Entirely independent of Government, the National Trust looks after more than 250,000 hectares of countryside, 780 miles of coastline and 500 historic properties, gardens and nature reserves.
The National Trust is for everyone – we were founded for the benefit of the whole nation. We receive on average more than 26.9 million visits each year to the places we care for that have an entry fee, and an estimated 100m visits to the outdoor places that are free of charge. Paying visitors, together with our 5.6 million members and more than 53,000 volunteers, support our work to care for nature, beauty, history. For everyone, for ever.
For more information and ideas for great seasonal days out go to www.nationaltrust.org.uk
Toilets are located at the Visitor centre just a short walk from the theatre.
The Visitor Centre also has a shop and cafe, with indoor seating and plenty of picnic tables for your pre-theatre picnics!
There’s plenty of parking onsite and special close-up parking on request.
Enjoy a range of takeaway snacks and hot and cold drinks from the King’s River Café, including alcoholic drinks, ice creams, and snacks for vegetarians as well as gluten and dairy-free options!
- Tranmer House, Sutton Hoo, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP12 3DJ
- By cycle
- Cycle rack located next to Visitor Welcome building. Please be aware there are no cycle paths on site. Cycle route information
- By train
- Melton 1¼ miles, Woodbridge 3 miles
- By road
- On B1083 Melton to Bawdsey, follow signs from A12. There is ample free parking on site
- By bus
- From Ipswich to Framlingham (passing Melton train station)
WHAT IS THEATRE IN THE FOREST?
See Shakespeare as you’ve never seen it before – outdoors and under the stars!
Theatre in the Forest is famed for making Shakespeare accessible and fun for all, staying true to the text while injecting high energy, dance, music, colour and magic. For over 20 years, we have welcomed over 8,000 audience members each summer, making it the largest outdoor family theatre event in Suffolk. After seven wonderful years at Jimmy’s Farm, Theatre in the Forest is moving to the historic woodlands at Sutton Hoo.
WHERE IS IT HELD?
The event is held amongst the trees in the beautiful woodland clearing at Sutton Hoo, near Woodbridge in Suffolk. Sutton Hoo has the King’s River Cafe, serving refreshments and alcoholic drinks during the pre-show and interval. For more info on how to get there, check out our ‘Directions’ tab.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The magic begins as soon as you step foot inside the auditorium space, with our dedicated and friendly team of volunteers ready to greet you and show you to your seats. The space opens up to 90 minutes before the performance begins, leaving plenty of time to enjoy the unique pre-theatre atmosphere. You may even bump into a cast member or two in-character as they like to meet, mingle and joke around during the pre-show! Audience members are welcome to bring their own picnics, but all rubbish must be taken home.
We are working on developing our new venue with flexible seating to allow for safe social distancing and we will be in contact with ticket holders in advance of the performance to confirm seating for all parties.
For those with access requirements: parking/seating reservations MUST be made in advance, by calling our box office (01473 603388). Seats will be reserved under the surname of the booking party, is it essential that party members arrive in the space by 7pm.
In the event of severe weather and/or closure of the Sutton Hoo site, you can exchange your tickets hassle-free to a later performance in the run. If you have any other questions, feel free to give our friendly box office team a call on 01473 603388 and they will be happy to help. We are dedicated to making the Theatre in the Forest experience as enjoyable and memorable as possible for everyone!
ARE DOGS ALLOWED AT THE VENUE?
We are more than happy for dogs to attend and enjoy theatre just as much as people. All we ask is that your little furry friend is to remain on a lead so that audience members feel as safe as possible.
For the safety and enjoyment of all audience members, this is a no smoking event. Sutton Hoo is a site of international historic significance and littering will not be tolerated. All rubbish from picnics must be taken home to be binned and items bought on site disposed of in the bins provided. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Drink-driving is against the law; if you intend to drink, please designate a driver. Mobile phones must be switched off or set to silent during the show.
Sutton Hoo is a one way entry and exit, please ensure you exit using the correct road. Don’t forget it will be dark by the end of the performance, so we advise you to bring a torch for your walk back to the car park. If you’re in need of any assistance please don’t hesitate to find a steward.
Theatre in the Forest will be a COVID secure event and the safety of our audiences, staff and actors is our first priority. We have secured funding from the Arts Council’s Cultural Recovery Fund to develop this new venue to welcome back audiences to join in a thrilling and emotional experience together safely.
We are so excited to be collaborating with world-leading designers, 59 Productions, who have designed our brand new auditorium!
59 Productions were behind the video design of the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games and have won many awards for their ground-breaking designs, including Olivier and Tony awards. But what is more special is the company was founded by Mark Grimmer, who was part of our original Chainers youth theatre! We are delighted to be working with Mark again and the incredible project team, led by 59 Productions Director Leo Warner and Head of Architecture Jenny Melville.
“59 Productions are thrilled to be collaborating with Red Rose Chain on their new, bespoke, outdoor venue for Theatre in the Forest. We are passionate about creating spaces that are safe, secure and accessible for all and can’t wait for audiences in Suffolk to enjoy live theatre once again, this time at Sutton Hoo.”
What’s on at Theatre in the Forest
Kicking off our first year at this wonderful site with Red Rose Chain’s return to live theatre will be an epic production of Shakespeare’s MACBETH.
Get your tickets and find out more here.