Council proposals to build a new Shakespearean theatre in Prescot have been formally submitted for planning approval.
The Shakespeare North Trust wants to create a 350-seat playhouse and education centre in Prescot.
Some scholars believe The Bard spent time in Prescot as a young man.
There is also evidence some of his earliest plays were performed in the town, while there are suggestions he worked as a tutor on the Knowsley Hall estate.
If approved, the centre will be the site of the only freestanding purpose-built Elizabethan era theatre outside of London.
The proposals, backed by Knowsley North MP George Howarth, have also recently been publicly praised by David Cameron and the Minister of State for Culture Ed Vaizey.
Knowsley Council have validated the planning application and will now consult the local community and are hopeful to make a decision in April 2016 – the month that millions of people across the globe will celebrate the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death.