The Globe Theatre is a reconstruction of an Elizabethan playhouse associated with William Shakespeare, on the south bank of the River Thames. The new building stands only a few hundred yards from the original site. The original theatre was built in 1599, destroyed by fire in 1613, rebuilt in 1614, and then demolished in 1644.
The rebuilding of the iconic building stems from the founding of the Shakespeare's Globe Trust by the pioneering American actor and director Sam Wanamaker.
The new Globe Theatre is based on available evidence of the 1599 and 1614 buildings. Concessions have been made to comply with fire and safety regulations such as additional exits, illuminated signage, fire retardant materials and some modern backstage machinery. However, the new Globe is as accurate a reconstruction of the old Globe as was possible with the available evidence. The changes have had an impact on audience sizes, the building will accommodates only 1,400 people wherreas the original building held 3,000.