On Saturday 25 November 2023 representatives from across Droitwich and congregation members gathered as a plaque to commemorate Droitwich born John Heminge was unveiled at St Peter's Church. Heminge was one of two people who collated and edited Shakespeare’s First Folio.
This year is the 400th anniversary of the publication of the 'First Folio,' which is the first collected edition of William Shakespeare's plays. The folio was collated and edited by John Heminge and Henry Condell seven years after Shakespeare's death. John Heminge was also baptised at the St Peter’s Church in Droitwich on 25 November in 1566 and the original record of his baptism was on display.
At the ceremony to unveil the plaque, the Town Crier offered words of welcome, after which Droitwich Mayor Kate Fellows shared about Heminge's role in creating the First Folio and his link to the church. Ross Armstrong of the Royal Shakespeare Company, who was also a Droitwich lad, read a portion from the Folio and the Revd Laura Handy helped those present to reflect upon the many thousands that had been baptised at the church over the years and what it looks like to take our place in the world, before using the final blessing from a modern day baptism service to round off the reflection.
The plaque was then unveiled to much applause, before the Town Crier closed proceedings. St Peter's Church was also the place where Edward Winslow was baptised and regularly receives visitors from America who are following the trail of the Pilgrim Fathers.