The location for one of the highest rating UK dramas in recent years – Highclere Castle – will be making a final appearance as ‘Downton Abbey’ on Christmas Day.
Situated in North Hampshire, Highclere Castle is one of over 400 film locations on the ‘Film Hampshire’ database.
Film Hampshire is a Hampshire County Council service that promotes the county’s wide range of filming locations, with a key draw for film and television production companies being the county’s diversity of settings that include rolling hills, acres of forest and coastal sites, as well as historic buildings and a long-standing naval and military heritage. This together with and the proximity to excellent transport links makes Hampshire an attractive proposition.
Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment, Councillor Seán Woodward, said: “This high profile production has most certainly put Hampshire and Highclere Castle firmly on the location map. This has such a positive effect on our local economy – with casts and film crews staying and spending money locally, and tourism in Hampshire boosted through, for example, fans visiting the sets and locations.”
Production spend contributes significantly to the Hampshire economy, with £8 million per annum generated by film makers.
Film Hampshire service also offers production companies access to a wealth of local expertise and an extensive network of contacts within Hampshire. Hampshire has been the source of locations for a number of world famous productions over the years. Most recently these include Wolf Hall, Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation, The Hollow Crown: Wars of the Roses, Avengers: Age of Ultron and War Z. Film Hampshire’s website (hants.gov.uk/filmhampshire) includes a map that shows the locations used by film and television production companies over the years.
First aired in 2010 ‘Downton Abbey’ is a television drama broadcast in over 250 territories and viewing figures averaging over 11 million per episode. The series follows the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants on the fictional Yorkshire estate. Set in the post-Edwardian era, the series charts the trials and tribulations of its characters through the 1920s.