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  • Emily Hawes

Lights, Camera, Hampshire: A Tour of Filming in the County!

Hampshire, a picturesque county in the south of England, has long been a favourite location for filmmakers and TV producers. With its diverse landscapes, historic architecture, and stunning coastlines, it's no wonder that Hampshire continues to attract the spotlight. Join us as we explore some of Hampshire's most famous filming locations and the cinematic magic they've brought to the big and small screens.

1. Highclere Castle - the Legendary Downton Abbey:

Highclere Castle played a central role in the international hit series, Downton Abbey. Visitors can explore the house and its beautiful grounds, with Downton Abbey snippets woven into the tour. The castle also made appearances in films like The Secret Garden, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, and Eyes Wide Shut. Don't forget to indulge in afternoon tea and sample Highclere Castle gin at the outdoor bar during the summer.

2. Winchester Cathedral - Royal Connections:

Winchester Cathedral, with its stunning architecture, has been featured in several notable productions, including Tom Hanks' The Da Vinci Code and Netflix's The Crown, where it stood in for Vatican City. Nearby Winchester College provided the backdrop for scenes in Les Misérables. The city also boasts a wealth of independent shops, restaurants, and bars, making it an ideal place to explore after visiting the cathedral.

3. Aldershot and Farnborough:

Hampshire's military areas have served as a popular base for Hollywood filming. Aldershot's barracks appeared in Bond films like Die Another Day and Quantum of Solace, while Farnborough airport featured in Leonardo DiCaprio's Inception.

4. Hawley:

Nestled near the Surrey border, Hawley is a cinematic gem in Hampshire, gracing films like Sahara and Avengers: Age of Ultron with its stunning Hawley Lake and Woods. In Die Another Day, it even transformed Hawley Lake into the North-South Korean border. Nearby, Minley Manor set the stage for the fantasy film Stardust. Be sure to visit the Coffee Shop on the Green for refreshments and explore the nearby areas, including Aldershot, Farnborough Airport, and Blackbushe Airport, where the racing film Rush was shot.

5. Portsmouth:

Located in the south of Hampshire, Portsmouth's historic dockyard is a must-visit destination. Dock No. 9 at the dockyard was used in the opening scenes of Les Misérables, where the prisoners sang 'Look Down.' Additionally, HMS Westminster served as a location in the Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies. The area boasts numerous restaurants and bars, with Gunwharf Quays offering even more options and outlet stores.

6. River Hamble:

The River Hamble is famous for being the backdrop of the TV series Howard's Way. Visit the yachting village of Hamble, Old Bursledon, the Elephant Boatyard, and the Jolly Sailor pub, all of which were regularly featured in the show. Enjoy a river cruise or paddle-boarding, and explore the cafes and restaurants in the area for a delightful experience.

7. Basingstoke:

Even Basingstoke gets its moment in the cinematic spotlight. Basing House was a location used in film Pride & Prejudice and Zombies, while the town is humorously referenced in the classic sitcom Only Fools and Horses.

Hampshire's stunning landscapes, historic sites, and diverse settings have made it a beloved destination for filmmakers and television producers. Hosting numerous notable films and TV series, from Downton Abbey to James Bond films, and actors from Brad Pitt to Tom Cruise. With a rich history of cinematic appearances, this county continues to captivate audiences worldwide. Our studios, Black Hangar Studios, is located in the charming Hampshire town, Alton. So, whether you're a film enthusiast or simply looking for a unique travel experience, Hampshire is the perfect place to explore the magic of the silver screen while enjoying its rich culture, history, and natural beauty

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