Queens of Mystery (2019-2021)

Cast Julie Graham, Siobhan Redmond, and Sarah Woodward standing by a table full of books outside a church with bunting in the background.

Queens of Mystery (2019) © Sly Fox Productions

Directors: Ian Emes, Theresa Varga, Jamie Magnus Stone
Starring: Julie Graham, Siobhan Redmond, Sarah Woodward and Olivia Vinall (Series 1), Florence Hall (Series 2)
Production Company: Sly Fox Productions Limited
Kent Locations Used: Farningham, Cranbrook, Smarden, Lympne Castle, Woodchurch Windmill

Queens of Mystery (2019-2021) follows the adventures of detective Matilda Stone (Olivia Vinall – Series 1; Florence Hall – Series 2) and her three crime writing aunts Cat Stone (Julie Graham), Jane Stone (Siobhan Redmond), and Beth Stone (Sarah Woodward) as they attempt to solve crimes in the picturesque English village of Wildemarsh.

Created and written by Julian Unthank (Doc Martin, New Tricks), with Mathew Thomas (MarcellaThe Chameleon) writing four episodes, each series consists of three murder mysteries told in six episodes.

The principal cast includes Julie Graham (SurvivorsShetland), Siobhan Redmond (The Smoking RoomCaptives) and Sarah Woodward (The Merry Wives of Windsor) with Florence Hall (The Princess Switch: Switched Again, The Princess Switch 3: Romancing the Star) joining in Series 2 to take over from Olivia Vinall (The Woman in White, Where Hands Touch). Other regulars include Martin Trenaman (The Inbetweeners Movie, PhoneShop), Andrew Leung (Cruella, Lilting), Michael Elcock (The Grey Tarmac Road) and Rebecca Grant (Holby City, Showtrial). Juliet Stevenson (Bend it Like Beckham, Truly Madly Deeply) was Emmy-nominated as a narrator in Series 1 and reprises the role for Series 2.

Queens of Mystery‘s impressive guest cast have included Josette Simon (Wonder Woman (2017), The Witches), Nancy Carroll (The Crown (2016-2020), Stephen), Mark Heap (Friday Night Dinner, Stardust), Danny Webb (Humans (2016), Liar (2017-2020)), Michelle Collins (EastEnders, Death in Paradise), Omid Djalili (His Dark Materials, Lucky Man), Emma McDonald, Charlie Maher (The Titans That Built America, Black Narcissus), Rufus Hound (Trollied, Zapped), Sarah Hadland (Miranda, Horrible Histories), Sara Stewart (Batman Begins, Doctor Foster) and Colin McFarlane (Outlander, Little Princess).

Behind the scenes photo from the set of Series 2 of Queens of Mystery. A man stands in the background of the photo wearing a police uniform and cap. In the foreground are the hands of someone from the crew holding a clapperboard open.

Behind the scenes of Series 2 of Queens of Mystery (2021) © Sly Fox Productions

Series 2 sees lead director Ian Emes return to direct two of the three murder mysteries, with Theresa Varga (Secret Life of Boys, Hetty Feather Series 1 (2015)) directing the middle block. Both series’ make use of multiple filming locations in Kent.

Production visited several locations in Farningham for the hero village of Wildemarsh. Beth’s cottage, which features throughout Series 1 and 2, was filmed on the Mill Estate. In Series 2, the exterior of the doctor’s surgery as well as of Victoria Durrell’s (Selina Griffiths) and Henry Wade’s (Aki Omoshaybi) houses and Rachel’s Papers shop were also filmed on the Mill Estate. Wadard Books on the High Street doubles as the Murder Ink bookshop and Jane’s house. Farningham Village Store also features as Wildemarsh Village store and the entrance to The Corn Exchange Theatre in Series 1. Farningham has previously been used as a filming location for Flesh and Blood (2020).

Production used Lympne Castle as Hiddledean Castle in the Series 1 episode entitled Murder in The Dark. Lympne Castle is an unspoiled 13th century Manor in the Folkestone & Hythe district of Kent that boasts stunning views of the Romney Marsh. It has previously been used as a filming location for The Honourable Woman (2014) and Great Expectations (2012).

In the Death By Vinyl episode in Series 1, Stoneydale craft shop in Cranbrook was converted into the The Sound and Fury record shop in Wildemarsh. Cranbrook also features as the High Street throughout both series. In the Series 2 episode Sparring with Death, Part 1, St Dunstan’s Church and graveyard in Cranbrook feature when Matilda and Beth visit the grave of Beth’s husband.

St Michael’s Churchyard in Smarden was used as the Wildemarsh churchyard, and a private residence in Water Lane featured as the village’s Embittered Hack Pub in Series 1. Productions that previously filmed in Smarden include The Mirror Crack’d (1980).

Woodchurch Windmill in Ashford features as the exterior of Wildemarsh Windmill throughout both series. The view from the mill to the village below also features throughout.

Series 1 launched on 29th April 2020 on Acorn TV and can be found hereSeries 2 launches on Monday 29th November 2021 also on Acorn TV.

Lead actress Florence Hall sits at a wooden desk in a bedroom with lime green walls. She has a platinum blonde bob haircut, and wears a blue shirt with black and grey flowers printed on it. On the desk are multiple files stacked on top of one another, and she holds a sheet of paper in her hand. She looks off to the right hand side of the frame, and on the left hand side a TV camera is pointed at her.

Behind the scenes of Queens of Mystery Series 2 (2021) ©Sly Fox Productions

 

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map. 


Back to Life Series 1 and 2 (2019 – 2021)

 

Daisy Haggard as Miri Matteson is sat on a bench on a pebbled beach with Adeel Akhtar as Billy. She has long hair blowing in the wind and is holding her phone and a sandwich. She is wearing a green anorak and black leggings. Adeel has black hair and a beard and wears a brown jacket and blue jeans.

Miri Matteson (Daisy Haggard), Billy (Adeel Akhtar) in Back to Life Series 2 (2021) in Hythe © SHOWTIME

Writer: Daisy Haggard and Laura Solon
Director: Christopher Sweeney
Starring: Daisy Haggard, Geraldine James, Jamie Michie, and Christine Bottomley
Production Company: BBC Studios
Kent locations used: Dungeness, Abbot’s Cliff in Dover, Folkstone Harbour Arm, Hythe, Lydd-on-Sea

BBC3 comedy drama Back to Life follows Miranda ‘Miri’ Matteson (Daisy Haggard Breeders Series 2 (2021), Hilda) who has just been released from prison, having spent a decade behind bars. In Series One she is desperate to go straight and move on with her life.

In Series Two Miri starts a relationship with her neighbour Billy (Adeel Akhtar (Victoria and Abdul (2017)), but all is not plain sailing as a body is washed up on the beach and she becomes the prime suspect.

The series was directed by Christopher Sweeney (Parental Advisory: Disciplinary Measures, Women are from Mars), is written by Daisy Haggard and Laura Solon, and stars Daisy Haggard (Black Mirror, Outnumbered), Geraldine James (Alice in Wonderland, Sherlock Holmes), Jamie Michie (Game of Thrones, The Outlaw King) and Christine Bottomley (Hard Sun, The End of the F***ing World).

The series is set in in the small seaside town of Hythe, and filming for both series took place along the seafront, including various scenes at the beach promenade on West Parade, and a cycling sequence on the promenade at Princes Parade. In Series 2, Hythe High Street is pictured in various scenes, including Caroline (Geraldine James) and Oscar’s (Richard Durden) litter-picking crusade and when Lara’s father John (Adrian Edmondson) leads a procession of mourners through the town.

For Series One, production filmed in locations across Dungeness, including Dungeness Estate and the Britannia Pub InnLydd on Sea’s Lade Car Park also features in both series; in Series One it plays host to a Fish & Chips van, and in Series Two it became the driving school where Miri takes her practical test. Dungeness has played host to several recent TV productions including Brave New World (2020), The Third Day (2020) and Fantasy Homes by the Sea – Series 7 (2018).

Folkestone’s Harbour Arm features in several episodes of Series Two, with the lighthouse becoming the site of an untimely and mysterious death. The Folkestone & Hythe district of Kent has 26 miles of beaches and is a popular location for filming, recently appearing in Flesh and Blood (2020) and Queens of Mystery (2019).

Abbot’s Cliff in Dover features in both series as the site of a tragic death.

Series One aired on BBC 3 on Monday 15th April 2019 and is currently available on iplayer.

Series Two airs weekly on BBC One from Tuesday 31 August at 10.35pm and will be available on BBC iPlayer from the same date.

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map.