Writer / Creator: Simon Nye
Starring: Bradley Walsh, Joanna Scanlan, Sabrina Bartlett (Series 1), Joelle Rae (Series 2) Tok Stephen, Peter Davidson
Production Company: Objective Fiction, Genial Productions
Kent Locations Used: Viking Bay and Victoria Gardens – Broadstairs, Eynsford, Faversham, Stonepitts PYO Farm, Sundridge, Squerryes Court, Walpole Bay Hotel & Museum, Underriver, Chiddingstone, various undisclosed villages and farms in North Kent, Tonbridge Castle, Leigh, Sackville School, Canterbury prison
ITV’s The Larkins (2021-2022) returns for Series 2. The show is an adaptation of the five beloved HE Bates’ novels about the Larkins which began with The Darling Buds of May. The comedy drama series was written and created by Simon Nye (The Durrells, Finding Alice) and stars Bradley Walsh (Law & Order: UK, Coronation Street) as Pop Larkin, Joanna Scanlan (After Love (2021), Getting On) as Ma Larkin, Peter Davison (Call the Midwife (2020), Doctor Who) as The Vicar, Sabrina Bartlett (Bridgerton (2020), Victoria) as Mariette Larkin (Series 1), Joelle Rae (Get Even) as Mariette Larkins (Series 2), and Tok Stephen as Cedric ‘Charley’ Charlton (Silent Witness, Grantchester).
Bradley Walsh takes on a role originally played by David Jason (Still Open All Hours, Only Fools and Horses) in The Darling Buds of May (1991 – 1993), a story about the lives of the working class May family in rural Kent in the 1950’s.
Series 2 sees a new family settle in the picturesque village, and they soon find themselves at war with the Larkins. Also joining the new townspeople is Reverend Candy (Maxim Ays (Sanditon, Still So Awkward)), whose handsome face immediately sets Primrose’s heart aflutter.
During filming of Series 1 and 2, as well as the 2021 Christmas Special, production filmed on various farms and villages in North Kent for the setting of the family farm and village.
In Episode 3, Victoria Gardens and Viking Bay in Broadstairs feature when Ma and Pop Larkin go on a holiday to Margate. Faversham town and the Guild Hall feature in the same episode as Margate town and the Registry Office, where Ma and Pop rescue a runaway bride. The Walpole Bay Hotel & Museum in Margate also features in Episode 3 as the Margate Grand Hotel where Ma and Pop stay.
Eynsford village features in various episodes throughout this series. Eynsford Riverside appears in Episodes 1 and 2 as the Littlechurch river, Eynsford Village Hall appears in Episode 5 as the Littlechurch village hall where the locals vote on Tom’s plans for the village, and The Castle Hotel appears in Episode 2 during the pram race. The Five Bells Pub in Eynsford also appears in Episodes 2, 3 and 6 as the local village pub.
The Larkins enjoy strawberry picking in Episodes 4 and 5, and these scenes were filmed at Stonepitts Farm near Sevenoaks. Filming also took place at Long Barn in Sundridge, which became Seth’s Cottage in Episode 6, and Squerryes Court in Westerham became Bluff Court in Episodes 2 and 6, and the interior of Reg’s guesthouse in Episode 2.
The 2021 Christmas Special saw the return of various locations from the previous series, and featured some new sites including the Underriver Village Hall where the locals rehearse their festive pantomime, a private residence in Underriver which featured as the Norman’s home, and a private cottage in Chiddingstone which featured as the Nunn’s cottage
As well as the welcome return of Squerryes Court as Bluff Court and Underriver village hall, Series 2 features some new Kent locations, including several in Tonbridge.
Sackville School features as Fordington Prison’s visiting area, and Tonbridge Castle and the river behind it also appear, doubling as the exterior of the Mid Kent Times Office. A private estate in Leigh in Sevenoaks appears in the series as the interior of the Chand’s bungalow, the interior of the Mid Kent Times Office and the exterior of Lady Violet’s (Prue Clarke) cottage. Canterbury Prison also features in Series 2 as Fordington Prison.
Broadstairs in East Kent is a picturesque coastal town with several beautiful beaches, restaurants, bars and walking trails which provide visitors with a real Kentish seaside town experience. Victoria Gardens has stunning clifftop views of Viking Bay and Louisa Bay. Broadstairs and Viking Bay has welcomed productions including Breeders Series 2 (2021), Devils (2021) and Hurricane (2018).
Faversham is a beautiful historic market town in the Swale Borough of Kent. The historic town boasts over 500 listed buildings. Previous productions in the town include Bollywood film Jagame Thandhiram (2021), Whitstable Pearl Series 1 (2021) and Hetty Feather Series 1 – 6 (2015 – 2020).
The Walpole Bay Hotel & Museum in Margate was built for discerning guests in 1914 and extended in 1927. The hotel has five floors and 42 bedrooms and a museum space. The décor and layout is versatile to suit many eras and the hotel provides cast and crew accommodation and on road parking in a quiet cul-de-sac. Margate is a traditional seaside town complete with sandy beach, harbour, amusement park, period housing and modern art gallery Turner Contemporary. Recent productions to film in Margate are Whitstable Pearl Series 1 (2021), Two Weeks to Live (2020) and Pandemonium (2020).
Located on the River Darent, Eynsford has some distinctive features including its viaduct, ford and ancient ruins and is part of the Sevenoaks district. Stonepitts Farm sits at the foot of the North Downs in Seal, near Sevenoaks, with magnificent views over the beautiful Vale of Holmesdale that has been a local landmark for hundreds of years.
Squerryes Court in Westerham is a beautiful 17th century manor house which has been the Warde family home since 1731. It is surrounded by 20 acres of attractive and historic gardens which include a lake, restored parterres and an 18th century dovecote. Westerham is a very busy village on a through road near Sevenoaks. Recent productions to film in the Sevenoaks district include The Cleaner (2021), The First Team (2020) and Great British Railway Journeys Series 11 (2020).
Chiddingstone is one of the oldest and most picturesque villages in Kent. It’s described as the most accurate example of a surviving Tudor village in the county, complete with half-timbered frames, gables and stone hung red-tiled roofs. Previous productions to have filmed in Chiddingstone include A Room with a View (1986) and The Wind in the Willows (1996).
Tonbridge is a riverside town with picturesque castle, churches and historic buildings. Tonbridge Castle was built at the time of the Norman conquest and in 1741, stone from the towers, walls and keep were used in the building of the Medway canal. Other productions to have filmed in Tonbridge include PRU (2022), Making Noise Quietly (2019) and Missing (2009-2010).
Now owned by Canterbury Christ Church University, the former Canterbury prison has wings with closed cells dating back to 1808. It is a popular filming location, with previous productions such as Deceit (2021), Small Axe (2020) and Break (2020) having filmed there.
The Larkins S1 began airing on ITV on Sunday 10th October. All episodes are available to stream on ITV Hub as well as the Christmas Special which first aired on ITV on Saturday 25th December 2021 at 9pm.
Series 2 of The Larkins began airing on ITV on Sunday 16th October 2022.
For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map.