Going, Going - Gone?

Michael Leech on the efforts to save and excavate the site of the original Globe Theatre in London.

It's being cemented over already, there's a car park where the auditorium once was'. This was the glum comment of a friend of mine who lives not far from Anchor Terrace, a nondescript building of 1839 which, though a grade II listed building, would merit slight attention except for one thing. It is being 'done up' by a developer and it stands on the site of what is undoubtedly England's first literary shrine - the original Globe theatre stage. Is it too late to save it?

Archaeologists from the Museum of London worked on the brief excavation project in 1989. Until recently the auditorium was visible. The terrace is privately owned and stands on a 1.5 metre thick concrete platform - over the stage. They made holes in the platform and radar-scanned the stage below before being stopped. Quite a lot exists and is still visible.

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