LOVERS of Shakespeare and the great outdoors are being invited to enjoy both at the same time.

Some tickets are still available for this month's open-air production of A Midsummer Night's Dream at Ripley Castle Harrogate, which runs until June 26.

Sprite Productions, a company set up by professional Royal Shakespeare Company actors, is staging a promenade performance through Ripley's walled garden and woods.

Leading lady, local girl Hester Evans, has returned to her home village to play the role of Hermia. She grew up in Ripley and first acquired her love for the stage at the Knaresborough School of Speech and Drama.

The production has been designed to have universal appeal and before each performance, strolling entertainers - from magicians and minstrels to musicians and jugglers - will be doing their thing.

All proceeds from programme sales will go directly to Henshaws College, Harrogate, which offers further education to young people with a visual impairment, who have additional difficulties or disabilities.

To book, call Roger Evans on (01423) 771251. Tickets cost £16 for adults, £13 concessions and £40 family ticket.