"To BBC, or Not to BBC": Archive of Shakespeare Content to Be Digitised and Made Available Freely by BBC

By Gerald Lynch on at

The Bard and the Beeb are to have a bumper year in 2016, with the BBC today announcing plans to digitise the entire archive of Shakespeare works it has produced over the years and to distribute them freely online.

Marking the 400th anniversary of the playwright and poet's death, everywhere copyright allows, shows, scripts, photos and production notes will be shared for education purposes.

"I want to really celebrate Shakespeare in 2016. We’ll find the gems in our archive, in our extensive television and radio collection of Shakespeare’s plays and poems, programmes about Shakespeare, as well as scripts, stills and production notes," said BBC Director General Tony Hall.

"We will aim to make these available to schools across the country. Where rights allow or through BBC Store, we will make them available more widely still."

Details of the roll-out have not been revealed yet, but expect a steady stream of content to become available in the run up to the anniversary.

Image Credit: Antique book cover from