Director: Matthew López
Starring: Nicholas Galitzine, Taylor Zakhar Perez, Uma Thurman
Production Company: Amazon Studios, Berlanti Productions
Kent Locations Used: Private house in Sevenoaks
Based on the 2019 novel of the same name, Red, White & Royal Blue (2023) is an enemies-to-lovers rom-com about the forbidden romance between the son of the President of the United States and the Prince of England. If their secret affair comes to light, it could have irreversible political consequences.
Director: Aneil Karia, Lawrence Gough
Writer: Neil Forsyth
Starring: Jack Lowden, Hugh Bonneville, Emun Elliott, Charlotte Spencer, Stefanie Martini, Amanda Drew, Sean Gilder
Production Company: ViacomCBS International Studios
Kent Locations Used: West Kingsdown – Sevenoaks
Inspired by true events, BBC’s new series The Gold (2023) tells the story behind the Brink’s-Mat robbery – a crime that was once considered to be the largest theft in world history.
Creator: Julie Wassmer Starring: Kerry Godliman, Howard Charles, Sophia Del Pizzo, Frances Barber Production Company: Buccaneer Media Kent Locations Used: Whitstable, Canterbury, Faversham, Herne Bay, Margate, Ramsgate, Detling, Dover, Sevenoaks, Rochester
Based on the much loved series of novels ‘The Whitstable Pearl Mysteries’ by Kent resident Julie Wassmer (EastEnders, London’s Burning), Whitstable Pearl (2021-2022) is a detective series for Acorn TV. The story follows big-hearted local restaurant owner Pearl Nolan (Kerry Godliman) who sets up a local detective agency after undergoing police training in an earlier career. She is soon embroiled in her first case when she discovers the body of close friend, Vinnie. Pearl forms an unlikely partnership with DCI Mike McGuire (Howard Charles) and finds herself pulled into the dark underbelly of the picturesque town she calls home.
For both Series 1 and 2, most of the filming took place in and around Whitstable itself, including scenes filmed by the coast at Whitstable Harbour, Whitstable Beach, Whitstable Yacht Club and Tankerton Beach. In Series 1, Whitstable High Street features and local shops were filmed including Iain’s Plaice (fish and chip restaurant) and art gallery Chappell Contemporary as Houlihan’s Hardware store. Other Whitstable businesses filmed for Series 1 include the Cemetery, Football Ground, MFA Bowl and Seaview Holiday Park, which features as the trailer park where Vinnie lives. Several private residences were used for filming, including Beacon House as Pearl’s House for Series 1, the exterior of The Ness as Mike’s Flat in Series 2 Episode 2, The Warehouse Cottages for the same episode, and various private residences on Island Wall for Series 2 Eps 1 and 2. Filming took place at The Old Neptune pub, which doubled as the Pearson’s Arms for both series. Whitstable train station also features briefly in Series 2 Ep 2 as Pearl trails a suspected cheating spouse.
The Kent Events Centre was used as a studio build location in Series 1 for interiors of Pearl’s seafood restaurant.
Meanwhile, Margate in Thanet features in both series with Margate Beach and The Walpole Hotel doubling for Whitstable seaside scenes in Series 1, Dreamland and the Nayland Rock Hotel featuring in Series 2 as a theme park and The Bradford Hotel. For Series 1, production also filmed at St Peter’s Roman Catholic Church on Canterbury Road in nearby Westgate-on-Sea. The Port of Ramsgate and Royal Harbour Marina double for the Port of Dover cruise terminal and Dover Marina in Series 1.
Dover features multiple times in Series 2, with locations such as The White Cliffs, Port of Dover, Lydden Spout Battery and Western Heights making an appearance in Episode 1, along with various nearby roads. The Citadel also appears in both series, doubling as a police station. The Citadel also features in Series 1 as a children’s home, and in Series 2 Episode 1 the location’s tunnels feature as the setting for the dramatic confrontation between Kruz Tomlin (Yaw Nimako-Asamoah) and his stepfather Leo (Oliver Walker).
Rochester High Street in Medway appears in Series 2, with local businesses Baggin’s Book Bazaar, Kiss the Bride and a former Estate Agents featuring in Episodes 2 and 3.
Interior scenes for Series 1 were filmed at the former St Martin’s Hospital in Canterbury doubling as a police station and a hospital. Other filming locations for Series 1 include a field near Faversham at Belmont Park and private residence in Herne Bay.
Beacon House is a colonial clapboard wooden turn of the century Beach House. Set above beach on a private sea road, the grounds include wild woodland gardens and views out to sea and lines of beach huts. Catastrophe Series 4 (2019) filmed at this location.
The Kent Events Centre based in Detling is the largest, most flexible conference and exhibition venue in Kent, offering 7,000 sqm of indoor space available to film productions as studio space and 200 acres of outdoor space.
The Port of Ramsgate offers 32 acres of dedicated Port Land including 3 modern Ro-Ro bridges and Water and bunker facilities on all berths. It is often used as ‘stand-in’ for the Port of Dover. Royal Harbour Marina offers 700 finger moorings set in a picturesque and historic harbour setting. Crime dramas to previously film at the Port of Ramsgate include The Tunnel: Vengeance (2017) and Baptiste (2019).
Dover houses the major port, connecting the UK with the European mainland. Dover Castle towers above the town, signalling Dover’s strategic importance in the defence of the country and the White Cliffs are one of the most recognised landmarks in Britain. Recent productions to have filmed in Dover include Pistol (2022), Rogue Agent (2022), and The Tunnel: Sabotage (2016).
The Citadel, located on Dover‘s Western Heights was constructed in the late 1700’s as a port of defence during the Napoleonic war. Most recently it has been used as a borstal, prison, and immigration detention centre up until its closure in 2015. It is now becoming popular as a filming location and has welcomed several productions over the past year – soon to broadcast.
The town of Sevenoaks has a varied landscape, featuring a bustling high street, stately homes and castles as well as beautiful countryside. Located in that countryside is the St Clere Estate, which offers stunning views of the North Downs, formal gardens, paddocks, a kitchen garden, orangery, green houses, and a temple by the lake. Built in 1630, it has some fine architectural examples of the Caroline era. It has recently played host to a variety of productions including The Great (2020-2021), Gangs of London (2020-2022) and The Third Day (2020).
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
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.
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.
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.
Writer / Creator: Lucy Gaymer, Sian Robins-Grace Starring: Michelle de Swarte, Sinéad Cusack, Isy Suttie, Shvorne Marks, Amber Grappy Production Company: HBO, Proverbial Pictures, Sister Pictures, Sky Kent Locations Used: Botany Bay, Acacia Sports Hall in Dartford, Nell’s Café, Ramsgate Harbour Approach Tunnel, St Andrew’s Lake and Watersports Centre in Halling, The Quadrangle in Sevenoaks
The Baby (2022) is a horror comedy series about 38-year-old Natasha who is furious that all her friends are having babies. When she is unexpectedly landed with one of her own, her life is thrown into turmoil. She doesn’t want a baby. But the baby definitely wants her.
The Ramsgate Harbour Approach Tunnel is the approach road to Port of Ramsgate. The tunnel is over 800m long and about 9.5 metres wide. Because this is an alternative approach to the Harbour, this road and tunnel may be controlled during agreed periods. Previous productions to have made use of this include Hard Sun (2018) and The Tunnel: Sabotage (2016).
The Acacia Sports Hall in Dartford is a large sports hall and is part of a multi-use site that includes a manor and several outbuildings with ample parking. The Sports Hall is perfect for set building and storage with a ceiling height of over 20m. Recently opened as a build space for productions, The Baby is the first to make use of the facilities.
Situated between the River Medway and Pilgrims Way, St Andrews Lake in Halling is a unique 70-acre blue lake in a former chalk quarry with a total area of 122 acres of mixed woodland and a small lagoon area. From the Watersports Centre, you can hire a kayak, paddle board or a sailing boat.
The Quadrangle is a large Victorian farmstead built in 1870 in the Darent Valley, near Shoreham Village. The site features a grand lofty hay barn (15m x 8.5 m), converted Granary, stables, a holiday cottage, an orchard, and access to the River Darent for swimming and boating. Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast (2016) used the location for filming a mini food festival.
The Baby was released on NowTV on Sunday 24th April 2022.
Writer / Director: Leroy Kincaide Starring: Bethan Waller, Johnny Fleming, Kit Smith Production Company: Nocturnal Pictures Kent Locations Used: Ballin’ – Maidstone, Barming, Eastwell Manor Hotel, Hemsted Forest – Cranbrook, Kangaroo Court Coffee House – Chatham, Lenham, Sevenoaks, St Peter & St Paul Church – Aylesford, Teston Bridge Country Park, Wildwoods Restaurant – Maidstone
The Last Rite (2021) is an indie horror film about medical student Lucy who begins suffering from sleep paralysis and falls prey to a demonic force set on tearing her life apart.
The film was shot entirely on location in Kent. The main location, Ben and Lucy’s house, was filmed in a private house in Barming, Maidstone. Other Maidstone locations featured include Dr. Bennett’s (Simon Rhys-Jones) office, Ballin’ (formerly Gallery Superclub) and Wildwood Restaurant which double as The Cuban Bar and bathroom.
Another Maidstone location featured in the film is Teston Bridge Country Park, which appears in a short sequence where Lucy meets Father Roberts for the first time and asks for his help.
In the nearby town of Lenham, a private house features as the exterior and interior of Dr Andrews’ (David Kerr) house, where Lucy goes to seek answers about The Man in the Hat.
Hemsted Forest in Cranbrook appears in a short dream sequence, where Lucy imagines herself waking up in the woods and being haunted by The Man in the Hat.
A private house in Sevenoaks doubles as the living room and bedroom of Father Roberts’ house
Kangaroo Court Coffee House (formerly in Chatham, now in Rochester) features in a small scene where Lucy and her friend Ellie (Tara Hoyos-Martinez) meet to discuss the otherworldly figure in Lucy’s house.
Lenham is a market village situated on the southern edge of the North Downs, halfway between Maidstone and Ashford. In its centre is the busy but picturesque square, which has two public houses, a couple of restaurants, and a tea-room, as well as various shops. The village is at the main source of the Great Stour as well as the River Len, which flows in a westerly direction to join the River Medway at Maidstone.
Built in a Neo-Elizabethan style in 1920 on the site of the former stately home Eastwell Park, Eastwell Manor Hotel offers uninterrupted views over the North Downs, as well as a luxurious dining room, manicured lawns, a gym, leisure club, spa, outdoor pool and 9-hole golf course. The hotel appears in a 1992 episode of The Darling Buds of May (1991-1993).
Hemsted Forest boasts approximately 398 hectares of woodland, a mixture of conifer and broadleaf, and is rich in different bird species. The forest is situated in Cranbrook, a busy village with a large smock mill on the North Downs. Both Series 1 and 2 of the detective show Queens of Mystery (2019-2021) feature the village.
Chatham is a historic town situated in Medway, North Kent and is known for its historic dockyard, army barracks and high street. Series 4 of The Crown (2016-2020) features the barracks, and Operation Mincemeat (2022), along with many other high-profile productions, features scenes filmed at the dockyard.
The Last Rite was released on Amazon Prime on Monday 4th April 2022.
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
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).
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.
Director: Alex Winckler Writer: Greg Davies Starring: Greg Davies, Helena Bonham Carter, David Mitchell, Stephanie Cole, Layton Williams, Jo Hartley Production Company: Studio Hamburg UK Kent Locations Used: Private residences in Sevenoaks, Tunbridge Wells and Maidstone, Showfields Hall Community Centre
The Cleaner (2021) is a BBC sitcom that tells the story of Paul ‘Wicky’ Wickstead, a state-certified cleaning technician, who is responsible for the removal of any signs of death from crime scenes. When carrying out his duties, he stumbles across the strangest of people: from the victim’s relatives, employers, neighbours, and acquaintances, to occasionally even the murderers themselves. And because he’s a sociable type, he sometimes gossips more than he cleans.
During filming, production visited several private residences in the Sevenoaks, Tunbridge Wells and Maidstone districts, and built a green screen set at Showfields Hall Community Centre in Tunbridge Wells. Each episode of the series focuses on a different crime scene, and Kent residences are the main locations for all but Episode 3.
Writers: Damon Beesley and Iain Morris Director: Iain Morris, Damon Beesley Starring: Jack McMullen, Jake Short, and Shaquille Ali-Yebuah Production Company: BBC Studios, Fudge Park Productions Kent Locations Used: Sevenoaks
Production visited a private residence in Sevenoaks to double as Petey’s (Theo Barklem-Biggs) house and gardens. Sevenoaks is a Kentish town which is home to landmarks such as Knole Park and Riverhill Gardens, both of which have stunning natural and historic significance. Previous productions to film at Knole Park include The Favourite (2019) and Judwaa 2 (2017).
The First Team will air on BBC Two on Thursday 28th May 2020 at 9:30pm.
Director: Louise Hooper Writer: Sarah Williams Starring: Russell Tovey, Claudie Blakley, Lydia Leonard, Francesca Annis, Stephen Rea, Imelda Staunton Production Company: ITV Kent Locations Used: Farningham near Sevenoaks, Greatstone Beach (Romney Sands)
Flesh and Blood (2020), a new four-part series for ITV, is a modern story of three adult siblings, exploring universal themes of relationships, trust, loyalty and love against in aftermath of a tragic crime.
During filming production visited Farningham, near Sevenoaks, to film The Manor on the High Street as three separate location. Farningham nestles on the old London to Folkestone Road astride the River Darent. Scheduled as a Conservation Area, it includes many notable buildings and historic sites, including Farningham Mill, the site of a Roman villa and Farningham Woods SSSI and Nature Reserve.
Production also visited Greatstone Beach (Romney Sands) during filming. Greatstone is part of 26 miles of beaches in the Folkestone and Hythe District and the Dunes and Beach between Littlestone-on Sea and Lydd-on-Sea, often also referred to as Romney Sands is an area of SSSI.
Flesh and Blood will air on ITV over four consecutive nights starting on Monday 24th February 2020 at 9pm.