Great British Railway Journeys (2014)

Great British Railway Journeys © BBC/Boundless, part of FremantleMedia UK

Great British Railway Journeys © BBC/Boundless, part of FremantleMedia UK

Production Company: Talkback Thames

Kent locations used: Gravesend, Rochester, Faversham, Dover, Tonbridge

This BBC Two series follows journalist and broadcaster Michael Portillo as he travels the country by train and looks into how Britain’s railways have shaped the country as well as the impact trains have had on our lives. 

On the journey between cathedral cities Norwich and Chichester, Michael Portillo travels across the South East and visits some delightful Kent locations. In episode 18 of the fifth series, he visits Gravesend where he discovers how army officer General Gordon influenced the town before he travels to Rochester to explore the one time home of renowned writer Charles Dickens.

Michael Portillo, John Owen at Shepherd Neame brewery © BBC/Boundless, part of FremantleMedia UK

Michael Portillo, John Owen at Shepherd Neame brewery © BBC/Boundless, part of FremantleMedia UK

In the next episode, Michael starts his journey in Faversham where he visits one of the oldest breweries in the country, Shepherd Neame, to investigate how railways helped the brewery transport beer. He then visits Dover to explore the fortification at Western Heights before heading to Tonbridge where he learns how railways helped Tonbridge School to cricketing glory. 

Gravesend is on the south bank of the River Thames and has a cast iron pier, promenade and high street as well as international links at the nearby Ebbsfleet International station. Gravesend has welcomed other film productions such as Piggy (2012), Britain’s First Photo Album (2012) and Ashley Banjo’s Secret Street Crew (2012).

Rochester is a historic City that boasts an impressive cathedral and castle that links back to the medieval period. The City has strong connections with Charles Dickens, and many TV and film adaptations of his famous novels have filmed in the area such as The Mystery of Edwin Drood (2012), Oliver Twist (2007) and  Great Expectations feature film (1989).

Faversham is a beautiful, historic market town which boasts nearly 500 listed buildings and is set on the picturesque Faversham Creek. It has many restaurants, shops, attractions and beautiful walks and has been used for various productions including Channel 4 drama Southcliffe (2013), Great British Story: A People’s History (2012) and the nearby Oare Marshes were used in feature film Great Expectations (2012).

Dover is home to the infamous White Cliffs of Dover and Europe’s busiest passenger port. The area has been used for many filming projects such as Stiff Upper Lip – An emotional history of Britain (2012), Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011) and The Other Boleyn Girl (2008).

Tonbridge is a West Kent market town with a rich cultural heritage and spectacular scenery. The area is surrounded beautiful countryside and boasts castles, stately homes, gardens, farms, as well as sports and leisure facilities. Productions that have previously filmed in the area include Piers Morgan’s Life Stories – Dame Kelly Holmes (2012), BBC drama Missing (2010) and Countryfile (2009).

Don’t miss the Kent episodes of Great British Railway Journeys which will be shown on Wednesday 29 January 2014 at 18:30 on BBC Two and Thursday 30 January 2014 at 18:30 on BBC Two.

Links:

For more information about filming in Kent please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about the programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00xgqxy

For more information on Gravesend: http://www.gogravesham.co.uk/ 

For more information on Rochester: http://www.visitmedway.org/destinations/rochester

For more information on Faversham: http://www.faversham.org/visit_faversham.aspx 

For more information on Dover: http://www.whitecliffscountry.org.uk/Home.aspx

For more information on Tonbridge: http://www.visitkent.co.uk/destinations/tonbridge/6327

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/