Archive Update – The Herbal Bed

Archive Update – The Herbal Bed

Continuing  our endevour to catalogue and update our history, The Herbal Bed – written by local playright Peter Whelan – has now been added to our ever-growing archive, and can be found here.

The Herbal Bed is based on actual events which occurred in Stratford upon Avon in the summer of 1613, when William Shakespeare’s eldest daughter Susanna was publicly accused of having a sexual liaison with Rafe Smith, a married neighbour and family friend. Despite a recanting by her accuser, the young gentleman Jack Lane, the following month Susanna sues for slander in the court of Worcester Cathedral. Her husband, the respected Stratford physician John Hall, is desperate for her to clear her name in order to save his practice and gives her his complete support — but how can he avoid the fact that one summer’s night while he was away from Stratford, Rafe Smith was seen secretly leaving their herbal garden? Faced with political divisions within the church, the hearing in the bishop’s court becomes a risky gamble as three people’s private lives are subjected to the glare of intense public scrutiny in this emotional thriller whose result is anything but certain.

Among the cast was James King in his first role with The Rep. James can be seen in our current production of The Last Of The Haussmans, which opens on 25th April 2023.

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