Stratford-upon-Avon is a much-visited town. Visitors will be familiar with Shakespeare's birthplace, Holy Trinity Church, and the theatre, but may overlook many of the place's hidden secrets. Among them are a pitch for the playing of the ancient game of Nine Men's Morris, a wagon from one of the world's earliest railways, a tree planted in memory of the beautiful actress Vivien Leigh, the house of the bestselling of all Victorian novelists (it's not Charles Dickens), wall paintings that Shakespeare would have seen, the house in which the Gunpowder Plot was launched, and the home of the man who drew the most famous cartoon of all time.
Those reading Nicholas Fogg's book will never look at this famous place in the same way again. It demonstrates the wealth of detail that lies below every familiar surface.
Nicholas Fogg was born in Stratford-upon-Avon and educated at Warwick School and the Universities of Nottingham, Oxford and London. He has had a varied career in social work, journalism and as a teacher at Marlborough College. He is an expert on Shakespeare's life, his works and the history of Stratford-upon-Avon and has lectured widely on the subject. He has written the Shakespeare website for Historica, an international schools Internet project, penned a series of historical books and has long been a contributor to the UK broadsheets. He is a Fellow of Queen's University, Ontario. He lives in Marlborough.