Enjoy your own picnic in the beautiful gardens before heading into the auditorium to sit back, relax and be entertained. The picnic slope overlooks classic English parkland with historic Tolethorpe Hall in the background.

Grounds open at 11am for matinée performances and 5pm for evening performances.

Sorry, no barbecues, gazebos or dogs allowed.


Ready-Prepared Picnics

Alternatively, you can order a ready-prepared picnic for evening performances. There are two to choose from to complete a relaxed visit to Tolethorpe:


Picnic A – £19.50 per person

Houmous with caramelised onion with pitta bread
Melton Mowbray pork pie slice
Chicken Tikka drumstick
Antipasti of salami & mozzarella
Homemade coleslaw
Tuscan bean salad
Cherry tomatoes
Honey flapjack & two mini chocolate éclairs


Picnic B – £29.95 per person

Sliced Scottish smoked salmon with capers & lemon
Prawn, apple & celery medley
Chicken, ham and pork pie
Flaked salmon & tiger prawns with a pesto dressing
Tuscan bean salad
Homemade coleslaw
Askers Bakery granary roll & butter
Tarte au citron with strawberries and cream


Please note: Each picnic type requires a minimum order of two.

All picnics come complete with re-usable tableware and biodegradable cutlery. Porcelain crockery and Kings pattern cutlery can be ordered for £1.50 each (plus £5 deposit).


Advance booking is essential, as there are only a limited number of picnics available each night.
To book, please contact: 01572 813303 (10am-4pm, Mon-Fri).
Office address: Prykemans Theatre Catering, The Tithe Barn, Clatterpot Lane, Cottesmore, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 7DW.


Picnic slope


"One of the finest things to do this summer."
The Sunday Times

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"One of England's premier alfresco theatre venues."
The Stage

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"It really was superb... the scenery, costumes and actors were all fantastic, as per usual... another brilliant production."
Tracy (patron watching Hobson’s Choice in 2017)

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"One of the most entertaining plays I have seen in a long time."
Carol (patron watching Hobson’s Choice in 2017)

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"First experience yesterday and will most definitely be back... as good as any West End show I've seen... just brilliant."
Jo (patron watching A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2017)

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"One of the funniest and best performances I’ve seen in over 25 years of visiting Tolethorpe for my annual fix of Shakespeare."
Melissa (patron watching Much Ado About Nothing in 2017)

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"Hilarious... the production was inventive... the acting was superb... this was one of my most enjoyable experiences at a Shakespeare production ever."
Steve (patron watching Much Ado About Nothing in 2017)

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"Reaching new levels of excellence and innovation... some of the most compelling acting I've seen at Tolethorpe, full of passion and humanity and delivered with crystal clear diction."
Peterborough Telegraph (review of Much Ado About Nothing in 2017)

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"Best play I've seen at Tolethorpe... amazing comic timing... laughing out loud... fantastic play."
Stamford Mercury (review of Much Ado About Nothing in 2017)

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"The set design is excellent... the audience in stitches... a hoot."
Sardines Magazine (review of Much Ado About Nothing in 2017)

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"Excellent sets... another outstanding performance... nicely judged and hilariously managed."
Peterborough Telegraph (review of Hobson’s Choice in 2017)

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"Excellently played... the comic timing of lines is perfect."
Sardines Magazine (review of Hobson’s Choice in 2017)

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"Rollicking rendition of a classic comedy... talented cast... great comic timing... had the audience in stitches."
Leicester Mercury (review of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2017)

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"First class... costumes are marvellous... actors are all excellent... the audience rock with laughter."
Sardines Magazine (review of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2017)

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"We hugely enjoyed our evening, including a rattling good performance of Hamlet."
Richard Todd OBE (guest of honour at a production of Hamlet in 2000)

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