Rev Shakespeare hopes he's inherited his famous ancestor's way with words
William Shakespeare's wise words have seen him regarded as one of the most influential writers of all time.
And now one of his descendants is hoping he has inherited his famous ancestor's ability to connect with the man in the street.
The Reverend James Shakespeare, whose family are believed to be the closest living relations to the Bard, is training to become a street pastor in Leicestershire.
The Rev Shakespeare is taking to the streets in Market Harborough as part of a team who aim to calm people down and reduce late-night, alcohol-fuelled violence on Friday and Saturday nights
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"My famous relative had the knack of being able to speak to the ordinary person through his work and I am hoping that I will be able to do the same," he said.
"I will be co-ordinating the team of street pastors in Market Harborough and am training so I can help reach out to the needy."
The Rev Shakespeare, 39, has spent four years as a Rector in Birstall. He said his family is descended from John Shakespeare, first cousin of the playwright.
"The family link was discovered by my grandfather Sir Geoffrey Shakespeare, who was private secretary to David Lloyd George when he was prime minster," said the Rev Shakespeare.
"My father was actually called Sir William Shakespeare, so I have had quite a lot of ribbing from people all my life. It is something I have got used to and do not mind at all."
The Rev Shakespeare was formerly rector of the Parish Church of St James the Great in Birstall and Our Lady and Saint Nicholas in Wanlip.
He has now been licensed as an associate priest of the Market Harborough Anglican team by the Archdeacon of Leicester, the Venerable Richard Atkinson.
His new role will see him supporting Little Bowden and Great Bowden parishes, as well as serving Market Harborough's St Dionysius and Lubenham parish.
The Rev Shakespeare is married to Alison, 38, business director at Leicester Grammar Junior School and they have two children, Hannah, 8, and Edward, 6.
In his spare time, he writes poetry for his own pleasure – but has never had any work published.
"I use it as a form of expression and relaxation – but you never know the genes may kick in and I might produce something worthwhile," he said.
"That would be nice but I am more interested in connecting with the needy people on the streets by word of mouth."