ENGLISH HERITAGE PROPERTIES ON FILM
Many of our historic sites have doubled as fictional locations or even starred as themselves on screen. Keep an eye out and see if you can recognise them when watching these movies and TV series. We've also created an interactive map so you can see where they are.
The Big Screen
Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)
The crew took over several areas of Dover Castle, including the Secret Wartime Tunnels, seen in the opening sequence.
Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)
The Georgian mansion of Sutton Scarsdale Hall featured in this Warner Bros movie as the charred remains of the famous Wayne Manor.
A film based on the story of Dido Elizabeth Belle, who lived at Kenwood, so it’s only right the film should have shot some scenes there too.
Darkest Hour (2017)
A room at Brodsworth Hall and Gardens featured as a Downing Street bedroom to host a meeting between Winston Churchill and King George VI.
The Death of Stalin (2017)
Several areas of Wrest Park featured in Armando Iannucci’s satire about the scramble for power following the death of Joseph Stalin. The drawing room doubles as the Hall of Columns, while the garage hosts a trial.
Starring Cate Blanchett in the title role, Elizabeth used Aydon Castle as the location for both a torture chamber and the apartment of Elizabeth’s aide, Sir Francis Walsingham. Scenes were also filmed at Warkworth Castle.
Jane Eyre (2011)
Just one of the adaptations of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre to feature an English Heritage property, this version (starring Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender and Jamie Bell) included Wingfield Manor as the remains of Thornfield Hall.
Mansfield Park (1999)
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991)
Stan & Ollie (2018)
Scenes of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy’s Hollywood dressing room were actually filmed at Eltham Palace and Gardens in this biopic starring Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly.
Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)
Victoria and Abdul (2017)
This is the first film to feature the interiors of Osborne – Queen Victoria’s Isle of Wight holiday home appears in a significant portion of the movie.
Wonder Woman (2017)
The first action movie to film at Tilbury Fort saw it transformed with a large set in the parade ground. The fort was also a key location in BBC drama Taboo.
A-Z of more films featuring our sites
- Hamlet (1990), Dover Castle
- The Huntsman: Winter’s War (2016), Waverley Abbey
- Into the Woods (2014), Dover Castle and Waverley Abbey
- The Kid Who Would Be King (2019), Tintagel Castle
- King Arthur (2004), Stonehenge
- Mrs Brown (1997), Osborne
- The Mummy (2017), Waverley Abbey
- Nanny McPhee Returns (2010), Marble Hill House
- Notting Hill (1999), Kenwood
- Onegin (1999), The Grange at Northington
- The Other Boleyn Girl (2008), Dover Castle
- Peterloo (2018), Gainsborough Old Hall and Tilbury Fort
- Testament of Youth (2014), Brodsworth Hall and Gardens
- The Thirteenth Tale (2013), Brodsworth Hall and Gardens
- Tulip Fever (2017), Tilbury Fort
- Venus (2006), Kenwood
Our sites on Television
The Crown (2016–)
Eltham Palace was used in 2016 as a location by Netflix’s Golden Globe-winning series The Crown, which documents the early reign of Elizabeth II and stars Claire Foy and Matt Smith. Other scenes (including in later series starring Olivia Colman as the queen) were filmed at Audley End House and Gardens and Dover Castle.
Jane Eyre (2006)
In this BBC adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s novel, scenes of Lowood School, where the 10-year-old Jane was sent by her cruel aunt, were filmed at Bolsover Castle.
Part of a 2009 episode of Merlin was filmed in the moat and the solar room of Goodrich Castle. The episode, Sins of the Father, sees the appearance of Merlin’s enemy Morgause.
A-Z of more films featuring our sites
- Belgravia (2020), Wrest Park
- Brideshead Revisited (2008), Eltham Palace and Gardens
- Dracula (2020), Whitby Abbey
- King Lear (2018), Dover Castle
- Outlander (2014), Carlisle Castle
- The Royals (2015–18), Wrest Park
- SS-GB (2017), Tilbury Fort
- Taboo (2017), Tilbury Fort
- Trust (2018), Audley End House and Gardens
- Wolf Hall (2015), Bradford-on-Avon Tithe Barn and Dover Castle
- Vanity Fair (2018), Marble Hill House
- Victoria (2016–), Brodsworth Hall and Gardens and Osborne
Our Movie map
Behind the Scenes: Life on Location
English Heritage's filming manager Adele Cooper explains what's involved in filming at our sites
How many English Heritage sites are available as locations?
We explore the possibility of filming at all of our historic sites. Each one truly is unique.
What are the most popular sites?
Eltham Palace is a very popular location. It has played host to a number of TV series over the years including The Crown. Dover Castle is another site which has hosted a number of large scale projects over the years including Avengers: Age of Ultron and award-winning TV series such as Wolf Hall. Tilbury Fort is ever growing in popularity due to its proximity to London and large parade ground. And, of course there's Stonehenge.
What are the challenges of filming at historic sites?
Each site will have its own set of challenges, but our top priority is always to protect the fabric of the site and its collection (artefacts and objects). Lighting equipment can often be a challenging aspect to control as it can affect the environmental conditions of a room. We can overcome this by using LED lighting, which emits minimal heat. We also encourage simple activities such as switching off lights between takes. Bringing in props can also be a challenge. Something as simple as a fountain pen with ink can damage a historic interior, so we need to work with the production teams to check every object and all the potential risks in advance.
How do you fit filming in around public access?
A shoot will only take place during opening hours if measures can be provided to ensure a safe environment for our visitors. If it is deemed safe to do so we must then coordinate the shoot in a way that has the minimum amount of disruption to the visitor experience. It's very exciting to watch filming taking place at our sites, and we know our visitors find it exciting too.
What's the most unusual request you've received?
For me I find working with animals always generates a buzz on set. We've had requests to bring in many different animals of all shapes and sizes, from a tortoise to 35 horses.
How exciting is it to be on a big budget shoot?
It is incredibly exciting watching a space be transformed by a crew and brought to life by the actors. The quiet time after a shoot has finished is always a special moment and leaves me in awe of what English Heritage and the film crew were able to achieve.