THESPIANS young and old have joined forces to make the Bodleian Library’s plan to digitise Shakespeare’s first folio a reality.

Actress Vanessa Redgrave was one of the first to donate to the campaign to put a digital copy of the historic work on the internet.

She visited the Bodleian Library yesterday to meet students from Oxford University ’s Dramatic Society, who could have benefited from a free, online edition of the historic publication during their degrees.

English Literature graduate Ruby Thomas, 21, said: “It’s absolutely a great project.

“I just spent three years poring over my Shakespeare, and I would have used it.”

She added: “Vanessa was so nice, she was saying such complimentary things about what we are doing.”

Oxford University’s Dramatic Society is showcasing Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing between August 7 and 10.

Ms Thomas, who is playing Beatrice, said: “The director chose 1950s Mafia Italy. It’s going to be amazing.”