The Globe Theater was built in just 6 months between 1597 and 1598
The Chamberlain's men acting company, including William Shakespeare used the Globe, an open-air amphitheatre, as the venue for their summer productions
The theatre held more than 1500 people - it was a huge building - made of timber and with thatched roofs
There was no heating and limited artificial lighting
There was one entrance
And there were two flights of stairs leading to the galleries which surrounded the 'Pit' and the stage
There were three tiers of roofed galleries with balconies and the seats in each of the three levels of galleries were tiered with three rows of wooden benches which increased in size towards the back, following the shape of the structure of the building
To get to the stairs the members of the audience would walk behind the wooden benches through each of the galleries
The Globe was clearly a huge Fire Risk!
The competition between the theatres was fierce!
The better the plays and the better the special effects that accompanied them led to bigger audiences
The special effects used at the Globe were spectacular!
There were smoke effects, fireworks (for dramatic battle scenes), trap-doors and rigging which allowed for flying entrances. There was even music to accompany the plays!
The acting company became more ambitious with their ideas for special effects!
Someone had the idea of using a real cannon on the stage! This would be used at the beginning of a performance and would have produced an amazing sound effect!
Safety issues were not discussed! Fire hazards were ignored!
On June 29th 1613 fire broke out at the Globe Theatre - William Shakespeare would not have been in the theatre at the time of the fire as he had retired to Stratford-upon-Avon
A canon had been used for special effects, heralding grand entrances!
The canon was loaded with gunpowder and wadding
The canon was fired during a performance of King Henry VIII
The thatched roof caught on fire
Fire would have spread quickly - the building was made of wood