Using Birmingham’s forgotten past to inspire our future
Making the world’s first great people’s Shakespeare library relevant today
Project Activity

Resources created by project partners

Ark Explorers Present Shakespeare!

The Ark Explorers, a team of young people recruited to research the Shakespeare Memorial Library, worked with Bertz Associates to create a learning resource and quiz.

Their research began in summer 2022 where they met with members of the E2E team. Only 20% of the Ark Explorers knew about the Shakespeare Library. Their wish is that the library was accessed by more people.

The group explored the library's collection and hope that their research can get people excited about the Shakespeare Memorial Library.

Access the resource created by the Ark Explorers here

Doing Empathy Shakespeare’s Way’

‘Doing Empathy Shakespeare’s Way’, a play and workshop by project partner Michaela von Britzke, is a challenge for inclusiveness that reframes for contemporary needs Shakespeare’s speech for Thomas More to the Evil May Day rioters of 1517 from Antony Munday’s collaborative play 'Sir Thomas More' (1603).

The play is suitable for 10 players or 5 if parts are doubled. The reading time of the play is about 60 minutes. The workshop is suitable for up to 20 members and takes 2 hours or longer. Some parts of the play may be cut - much can be adapted to local purposes.

For more information email

We want to know what you think!

Everything to Everybody is generously supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, and is being delivered by University of Birmingham, Library of Birmingham and a wide range of community partners.

Jenni Waugh Consulting Ltd has been commissioned to carry out evaluation on our behalf.

If you are a teacher or group leader who has participated in the project then please complete this survey

If you have attended any of our events then please complete this survey

Please note that all individual responses are treated in complete confidence, and all views remain anonymous. All and any results from the survey will only be released in aggregated form so that no individual can be identified.

Mohammed Ali - Soul City Arts

Artist and Curator Mohammed Ali – Soul City Arts has created two new graffiti murals in the heart of Sparkbrook and Balsall Heath as part of the ‘Everything to Everybody’ Project.

Created through a five-week project with pupils from Montgomery Primary Academy, Sparkbrook and Percy Shurmer Academy, Balsall Heath, with a permanent mural appearing at each school, the project has encouraged these young people to ‘Tell Your OWN Story,’ remaking Birmingham’s uniquely democratic Shakespeare heritage in the process and exploring video, poetry, manga and mural painting in a series of dynamic workshops.

The new murals tell the stories of the vibrant and diverse, communities of Sparkbrook and Balsall Heath featuring their unique narratives and local industrial history and allowing them to claim “a place in the story” (Antony & Cleopatra) of Birmingham’s pioneering Shakespeare heritage.

Percy Shurmer School

Percy Shurmer School Mural by Mohammed Ali - Soul City Arts. Image courtesy of Jas Sansi.

Jewellery Quarter Research Trust

The JQRT have produced a series of films titled 'Victorian Do-Gooders', exploring Birmingham Victorians buried in Key Hill cemetery including: John Henry Chamberlain, the architect of Birmingham School of Art, Ikon Gallery and the Shakespeare Memorial Library; Robert William Dale, a preacher at Carrs Lane Church and champion of free education; Charles Vince, a staunch supporter of secular education and member of the Birmingham Education Society; the machinery manufacturer who partnered with Isambard Kingdom Brunel to launch the SS Great Eastern, Joseph Tangye; and street commissioner, Alderman and Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Robert Martineau. All played pivotal roles in the Civic Gospel movement and the creation of the Shakespeare Memorial Library, now housed in the Library of Birmingham. All 12 films can be watched on YouTube.

World's Stage

Project partner, Daniel Tyler-McTighe, a freelance theatre-maker, educator and director of 27:31, collaborated with BAFTA-winning film-makers John Roddy (Audio Bassment) and Ollie Walton (Fix8Films Ltd) and production manager Laura Killeen (General Manager, The Playhouse) to create seven 'World's Stage' films, a multilingual celebration of Birmingham, Brummies and their Shakespeare, in five acts.

The films, co-funded by Creative Multilingualism, feature 140 people who live, work and study in Birmingham. Some are born-and-bred Brummies and some are delighted to be ‘honorary Brummies’. They are from all over the city and represent different ages, communities, backgrounds and, most importantly, languages.

To watch the films please visit the E2E YouTube channel

Singing Playgrounds by Ex Cathedra

Project partner, Ex Cathedra, have launched a special Singing Playgrounds project: The Birmingham Programme is free to all Birmingham primary schools and will get your children creating their own new songs and singing games in their own languages and inspired by Library of Birmingham’s great Shakespeare collection.

For more information please visit the Singing Playgrounds website.

Mrs History Educational Resources

Project partner, Mrs History, have created four fun - and free - resources for children and families.

The resources, which can be used at home, individually or as part of a family group, introduce children and young people to one of Birmingham’s hidden treasures, Birmingham Shakespeare Memorial Library.

If you are a teacher or group leader who has used any of these resources then please complete this survey

Header image courtesy of Ben Gregory-Ring, World's Stage workshops, March 2020, Library of Birmingham