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SWAN THEATRE, Waterside Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, CV37 6BB, 017 8940 3046

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      20.05.2003 04:05
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      Robin Hood, Robin Hood, riding through the glen Robin Hood, Robin Hood, with his band of men Feared by the bad, loved by the good Robin Hood, Robin Hood, Robin Hood Whenever i meet new people while travelling, and i inform them that i live in Nottingham, the first thing they say is 'Ah! Robin Hood!' And i smile, laugh and blush. Yes, Robin Hood is the most famous thing about my home town, and yes, he is a corny, fictional, over-exploited legend. And yes, i do love my town's claim to fame that has financed countless movies and even a dumb song. Robin Hood, an outlaw alegedly living in Sherwood Forest with his band of "merry men" and girlfriend Maid Marrian, was the nemesis of Prince John, The Sheriff of Nottingham and Sir Guy of Gisbourne. Time and time again he managed to outsmart them, robbing from the rich and giving to the poor, making him an indigent man's hero. In reality, he was probably a common theif, albeit a brave one, idolised by his fellow villains and paupers. Long after his death the story was built up into the legend that we know and love today. But who cares whether the story is real or not? At least half a dozen movies, a cartoon, several TV spin-offs and a vitual shrine here in Nottingham can't be wrong, right? If you are lucky enough to visit my beautiful city, i strongly recommend going to see the Tales of Robin Hood exhibit. For a bargain price (i think its around £5 per person) you get to go on a "forest" tour of the robin hood story. It's actually rather atmospheric and educating, as well as great fun for children. Afterwards there is a gift shop, archery, cafe, falconry displays and 'living history' workshops. Fun for the whole family, its a great way to relive a legend, and girls, may i say that the Hood look-alike who supervises the archery is absolutely divine. Who cares if he's just a story? It&#
      39;s a pretty good one, and its at least put Nottingham on the map.

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