Tolethorpe Open Air Theatre

Rutland Open Air Theatre, Tolethorpe Hall, Stamford, Rutland, PE9 4BH, United Kingdom
Telephone01780 917240


Between  June – August 2024 – the Stamford Shakespeare Company don the stage in the beautiful gardens of Tolethorpe Hall. 2024 performances are the Shakespeare classic; Midsummer Night’s Dream, George Farquhar’s The Recruiting Officer and Jane Austen’s Sense & Sensibility. Also showing is A Monster Calls, performed by the Company’s youth drama TYD Theatre Makers.

An open air stage set in an enchanting glade, with a company of fine actors, stunning sets and gorgeous costumes, the magic of Tolethorpe begins even before the moment you take your seat in the covered auditorium.

Truly one of Europe’s finest open air theatres, the audience are comfortably seated and protected from occasional summer showers, beneath permanent all-weather canopy it’s the perfect setting to enjoy the works of the world’s greatest playwright.

Enjoy all the comfort of an indoor theatre with the charm of an open air setting in what everyone calls the complete Tolethorpe Experience. The Stage called it ‘one of England’s premier alfresco theatre venues’. There is nothing more enjoyable for a theatre visit on a summer evening than a picnic on the lawn… or a pre-performance meal in one of the two elegant restaurant rooms in the historic hall… a quiet drink in the sun-filled, spacious bar… or a stroll through the delightful garden where others have walked for the past 1000 years.

June-July – A Midsummer Night’s Dream

The woodland backdrop of the Tolethorpe stage provides the perfect setting for Shakespeare’s most spellbinding of plays. As twilight descends, the theatre transforms into a late Edwardian realm of magic and mischief, where love’s spell weaves through tangled relationships.
Enter an enchanted forest and witness the twisted romances of four young lovers and the hilarious escapades of a merry band of hopeless actors. Suddenly, amidst the moonlit chaos, fairies appear. The mischievous antics of the fairy king and queen, Oberon and Titania, and their impish servant, Puck will delight audiences of all ages. As love potions go awry, the characters find themselves entangled in a maze of mistaken identities and fantastical transformations. This perennially popular comedy is enormous fun for the whole family.

June & August – The Recruiting Officer

Step into the vibrant world of The Recruiting Officer, a rollicking romp and the most popular play of the 18th Century.
Follow the misadventures of womanising Captain Plume and his fellow officers as they arrive in the lively market town of Shrewsbury on a mission to recruit soldiers for the army. As they employ bribery, flattery and cunning plans to entice the locals, they become embroiled in a web of romantic entanglements and comic misunderstandings. The recruitment of soldiers is left to wily Sergeant Kite who dresses up as a fortune teller in order to trick naive young men into joining up. The plot thickens as Captain Plume falls for the witty and resourceful Sylvia. When Sylvia’s disapproving father sends her away to the country, she returns disguised as a man and offers to enlist.
This uproarious comedy has it all: plot twists, cross-dressing, forged letters, mistaken identities, love triangles, hilarious disguises, a merry band of folk musicians and a host of colourful, comic characters.

July – August – Sense & Sensibility

The original romantic comedy from the master of the genre.
When their family faces financial hardship and social upheaval, the Dashwood sisters, Elinor and Marianne, must confront their contrasting approaches to life and love. Elinor embodies sense, displaying reason and restraint, while Marianne represents sensibility, exuding passion and impulsiveness. They encounter romantic entanglements with various suitors and grapple with gossip, heartache, societal pressures and the clash between head and heart.
Laugh your cares away with a captivating production that celebrates the strength of sisterhood in a Regency-era rollercoaster of comedy and romance as the Dashwood sisters navigate society’s expectations in the pursuit of true love.


Introducing the dynamic duo behind The Fig Tree at Tolethorpe, local brothers Grant and Nathan Worthington. With extensive backgrounds in catering and hospitality, they’re dedicated to showcasing the best of locally sourced, fresh ingredients, crafting a menu that’s not only delicious but also sustainable.

The restaurant will open at 5.30pm to provide perfect pre-theatre dining. From salads and lights bites for £8, to a hearty carvery for £17, and delectable desserts from £3, there’s something to please every palate.


Looking for convenience? Let The Fig Tree at Tolethorpe handle the hard work with their Ready Made Picnics. Priced at £18 per person or £30 for a picnic for two, they’re filled with a variety of irresistible treats.

To book a table at The Fig Tree at Tolethorpe, pre-order picnics, or simply to request more information, contact:

Phone: 07955 670819
Email: [email protected]

Grant and Nathan can’t wait to extend their warm hospitality to people at The Fig Tree at Tolethorpe, where they’re eager to share their passion for exceptional food and drinks with each and every guest.


ADULT PRICE £15 to £22

Opening Times

Date From: 01/06/2024

Date To: 24/08/2024

Contact Details

Tel (1): 01780 917240

Email: [email protected]



Tolethorpe Hall, Little Casterton PE9 4BH, just off the A1, two miles north of Stamford.

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