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 (2020-2021) 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 (Marcella, The Chameleon) writing four episodes, each series consists of three murder mysteries told in six episodes.
The principal cast includes Julie Graham (Survivors, Shetland), Siobhan Redmond (The Smoking Room, Captives) 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).
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 here.
Series 2 of Queens of Mystery was released on AcornTV on Monday 29th November 2021.
For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map.