Covington Cross (1992)

Covington Cross characters standing in front of the castle facing the camera

Covington Cross © Gil Grant Productions/Reeves Entertainment Group/Thames Television

Creator/writer: Gil Grant

Starring: Nigel Terry, Cherie Lunghi, James Faulkner, Jonathan Firth, Tim Killick, Glenn Quinn, Ione Skye

Production Company: Gil Grant Productions, Reeves Entertainment Group, Thames Television

Kent Locations: Penshurst Place, Allington Castle 

Covington Cross is a medieval soap about the day to day concerns and struggles of the Grey family, headed up by widower, Sir Thomas Grey (Nigel Terry).

Although 13 episodes of Covington Cross were made, only seven were broadcast in America and the UK.

The series was created and written by Gil Grant (NCIS, 24, Army Wives) and stars Nigel Terry (Excalibur, Troy, Caravaggio), Cherie Lunghi (The Mission, Unforgotten, Secret Diary of a Call Girl), James Faulkner (Bridget Jones’s Diary, The Bank Job, X-Men: First Class), Jonathan Firth (Luther, Far from the Madding Crowd Far from the Madding Crowd, Pompeii: The Last Day), Tim Killick (Without a Clue, Erik the Viking, Little Claus and Big Claus Little Claus and Big Claus), Glenn Quinn (Roseanne, Angel, At Any Cost) and Ione Skye (Four Rooms, Wayne’s World, River’s Edge).

Covington Cross written in white with a picture of a castle at sunset behind

Covington Cross screenshot © Gil Grant Productions/Reeves Entertainment Group/Thames Television

The production chose Allington Castle to double as Covington Cross, the home of Sir Thomas Grey and Penshurst Place where the exterior features as the Convent in episode 2 and the Barron’s Hall as King Edward’s palace interior.

Allington Castle is set on the banks of the River Medway in 42 acres, near the town of Maidstone and features a moat, lakes and extensive gardens. The castle is now a private residence and has previously featured on productions such as  The Zany Adventures of Robin Hood (1984) and Bernard Matthews and Mars commercials.

Penshurst Place is a Medieval and Tudor style manor house set in gorgeous parkland in West Kent. The location offers formal Elizabethan gardens, state rooms and Gardens, an adventure playground and maze. Penshurst Place has previously been chosen as a film location by Wolf Hall (2015), The Great Fire (2014) and The Other Boleyn Girl (2008).

Covington Cross aired in 1992.


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

Henry VIII (1979)

image of a man and women dressed in tudor costumes stood next to each other in front of a pillar

Henry VIII screenshot © BBC

Director: Kevin Billington

Writer: William Shakespeare (play),

Stars: John Stride, Timothy West, Ronald Pickup, Claire Bloom, Julian Glover, Jeremy Kemp, Peter Vaughan

Henry VIII dvd cover- images of two tutor men on a black background. Henry VIII written in white underneath

Henry VIII dvd cover © BBC

Production Company: BBC, Time-Life Television Productions

Kent Locations Used: Hever Castle, Leeds Castle, Penshurst Place

Henry VIII is a BBC television film adaptation of William Shakespeare’s original play which provides a dramatized account of the events surrounding the divorce of Henry VIII from his first wife, Katherine of Aragon.

Originally broadcast in February 1979; the film was produced as part of BBC Shakespeare (1978-85), a series of Shakespeare plays adapted for television.

The film was directed by Kevin Billington (Outside Edge, The Good Soldier) with John Stride (Macbeth, The Omen) playing Henry VIII alongside Timothy West (Crime and Punishment, Eastenders), Ronald Pickup (Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The Chronicles of Narnia), Claire Bloom (The King’s Speech, Clash of the Titans), Julian Glover (For Your Eyes Only, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade), Jeremy Kemp (Z-Cars, Space: 1999) and Peter Vaughan (Porridge, Game of Thrones).

The entire film was shot on location at Hever Castle, Leeds Castle and Penshurst Place, which all have an association with the historical figures within the play.

Leeds Castle doubles as Henry VIII’s palace. Both interiors and exteriors are used to create a sense of real grandeur.

Penshurst Place was used for a number of scenes, including Katherine of Aragon’s residence, a council chamber at Westminster. Baron’s Hall was used as a hall in Blackfriars when it announced that Henry and Katherine shall split. One of the halls is used to double as a room in York Place where Cardinal Wolsey holds a ball; this is where Henry VIII and Anne Bullen first meet.

The timber-clad section of Hever Castle is used to double as streets in Westminster where two gentlemen meet to discuss the royal divorce.

Leeds Castle is set in 500 acres of beautiful parkland and formal gardens and has been used in various productions, including the ITV version of Henry VIII (2003), Lady Jane (1987) and Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949) .

Hever Castle is a thirteenth century castle which was once home to Anne Boleyn; it boasts formal Italian gardens and an ornamental lake. This location has also been used in various historical dramas, including Walking through History (2013), Inkheart (2008) and Anne of The Thousand Days (1969).

Penshurst Place is a Medieval and Tudor Fortified Manor set in gorgeous parkland. It is a film friendly location, having been used in notable productions such as Wolf Hall (2015), The Great Fire (2014) and Merlin (2008).

Henry VIII also features in the Kent Film Office Tudor(ish) Trail which celebrates Kent’s Tudor history and film connections.

This film was originally broadcasted on 25th February 1979, and is available to purchase on DVD.


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

The Beverly Hillbillies Season 6 & 7 (1967-1968)

The Beverly Hillbillies poster- 4 cast members smiling at the camera in front of a doorway. The Beverly Hillbillies written on a wooden sign above

The Beverly Hillbillies poster © Filmways Television/McCadden Productions

Creator: Paul Henning
Joseph Depew
Starring: Buddy Ebsen, Irene Ryan, Donna Douglas, Max Baer Jr., Raymond Bailey, Nancy Kulp
Production Company: Filmways Television, McCadden Productions
Kent Locations Used: Penshurst Place

The Beverly Hillbillies (1962-1971) is an American comedy about a poor hillbilly family who strike it rich after they find oil on their land. They move to Beverly Hills where they shake things up by bringing an unsophisticated and minimalistic lifestyle to the swank, sometimes self-obsessed and superficial community.

The Beverly Hillbillies was created by Paul Henning (The Bob Cummings Show, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels) and accumulated seven Emmy nominations during its nine series run.

Joseph Depew (The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, The Jack Benny Program) directed 145 episodes, including those filmed in Kent which stars Buddy Ebsen (Born to Dance, Breakfast at Tiffany’s), Irene Ryan (Petticoat Junction, Will You Stop!), Donna Douglas (Frankie and Johnny, Checkmate), Max Baer Jr. (Macon County Line, The Wild McCullochs), Raymond Bailey (Vertigo, The Incredible Shrinking Man) and Nancy Kulp (The AristoCats, Shane).

Penshurst Place entrance with driveway and trees. A car is parked in front

The Beverly Hillbillies screenshot at Penshurst Place © Filmways Television/McCadden Productions

 Penshurst Place with the writing Clampett Castle, kent, England on top

The Beverly Hillbillies screenshot at Penshurst Place © Filmways Television/McCadden Productions

The production chose to film at Penshurst Place which doubles as Clampett Castle which Jed (Buddy Ebsen) inherits, in Season 6 Episodes 3-4 and Season 7 Episodes 2-5.

Set in gorgeous parkland in West Kent, Penshurst Place is a Medieval and Tudor fortified style manor house boasting formal Elizabethan gardens, state rooms and Gardens, adventure playground and maze. A popular film location, Penshurst Place has also featured in productions such as Wolf Hall (2015), The Great Fire (2014) and The Other Boleyn Girl (2008).

The Beverly Hillbillies aired between 1962 – 1971 and is available to purchase on DVD.

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