WITH 100 days to go before it opens, the people behind Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre are midway through a complete trial build of the structure at a yard in Yorkshire.

Specialist firm Acorn Scaffolding, in Sherburn in Elmet, is building the entire 950 seat theatre at its base - to test the structure and give creative teams a chance to see the space they will be working in.

James Cundall, CEO of Lunchbox, the international theatre company behind the project, said the teams were “full steam ahead” but have “steam coming out of their ears” as they work towards the theatre’s opening in June.

Auditions are complete for the two companies of actors which will produce A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Macbeth, and Richard III and Romeo and Juliet, he added, and the casts will be announced soon.

“The creative teams are incredibly impressive, and we’ve got some unbelievable talented people gathered together,” James added.

Ticket sales have already launched and are “on target”, and around 3,500 out of the 8,500 special £10 tickets for schools have already sold. However schools can also still apply for bursaries, which will provide them with free tickets.

“We have schools coming from Liverpool and Manchester, and down to Lincolnshire. I’m really pleased about that because we always said this was a project not just for York but for the North,” James added.

As well as the Shakespearean style theatre, the company is planning an Elizabethan village with food and drink, and free wagon entertainment ranging from sonnets to medieval music to jesters. Work is currently going on to line up which food and drink producers will go into that site, and James said he had been thrilled at the variety on offer in the area.

“It’s amazing what quality and diversity of food that gets made here in Yorkshire,” he added.

Lunchbox has also confirmed that Yorkshire garden designer Sally Tierney will design and create an Elizabethan garden, with ornate box-edged beds of cottage flowers, roses and herbs, for the complex.

The theatre is due to open on Castle car park near Clifford’s Tower, on Monday, June 25.