Writer: Chris Addison, Simon Blackwell, Martin Freeman Director: Chris Addison, Ben Palmer Starring: Martin Freeman, Daisy Haggard, Alun Armstrong, Joanna Bacon, Patrick Baladi, Stella Gonet Production Company: Avalon Television, Sky Kent Locations Used: Broadstairs
Writer: Julie Wassmer, Øystein Karlsen, Mike Walden, Rachel Flowerday, Alastair Galbraith Directors: David Caffrey, Jon Jones Starring: Kerry Godliman, Howard Charles, Frances Barber Production Company: Buccaneer Media Kent Locations Used: Whitstable, Canterbury, Faversham, Herne Bay, Margate, Ramsgate, Detling, Dover, Maidstone
Based on the much loved series of novels ‘The Whitstable Pearl Mysteries’ by Kent resident Julie Wassmer (EastEnders, London’s Burning), Whitstable Pearl (2021) is a six part 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.
Whitstable High Street features in the show and local shops were filmed including Iain’s Plaice (fish and chip restaurant), Gilbert’s Cafe and art gallery Chappell Contemporary which doubles as Houlihan’s Hardware store. Other Whitstable businesses filmed include the Cemetery, Football Ground, MFA Bowl and Seaview Holiday Park, which features as the trailer park where Vinnie and Connie live. Several private residences were used for filming including Beacon House as Pearl’s House located on Tankerton Beach and several other properties across Whitstable town.
Interior scenes were filmed at St Martin’s Hospital in Canterbury doubling as a police station and a hospital, while The Citadel doubles as a Police Station and a children’s home. In Episode 3, Jasper House on London Road in Dover doubles as Greenacre Social Club. Other filming locations include the Redsand (Maunsell) Forts off the shore of Whitstable, a field near Faversham at Belmont Park, Hall Place Enterprises – a campus of the University of Kent at Canterbury doubling for interior scenes for both Whitstable Hospital and Whitstable Police Station – and private residences in Herne Bay and Thurnham near Maidstone. Mount Ephraim Gardens in Hernhill also features in Episode 1 as the Azarov family rented villa.
Canterbury is a historic cathedral city; many of its original historical structures remain, including the cathedral and section of the city wall. The city is a popular tourist destination and a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Sex Education Season 3 (2021) and Small Axe (2020) have previously filmed at locations in the City.
Mount Ephraim Gardens located in Hernhill, Swale is a late Victorian property with an impressive and grand columned entrance situated in 10 glorious acres of stunning Edwardian terraced gardens. The large hall has marble columns and an elegant staircase adorned with a highly decorative hand-rail. The original Victorian roof-mounted skylight is located directly above the hall, providing natural daylight.
Margate is a traditional seaside town complete with sandy beach, harbour, amusement park, period housing and ultra modern art gallery Turner Contemporary. 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. Westgate-on-Sea is a charming Victorian town, steeped in Heritage with quaint shops and two fantastic blue flag beaches. Margate is popular as a film location with recent productions including Two Weeks to Live (2020), Pandemonium (2020) and Top Boy – Series 3 (2019).
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 and the Ramsgate Harbour Approach Tunnel. 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).
Long Lost Family is an award winning British television series that started on ITV in 2011. The programme, presented by Davina McCall and Nicky Campbell, aims to reunite close relatives after years of separation. The new series explores new territory and tackles some of the most difficult social history of family separation through compelling and touching personal stories.
Following stories in and around the UK, the show inevitably came to Kent, particularly in Folkestone.
Episode four of the new series features 70-year-old widow Susan Webb who fell pregnant as a teenager and decided to have the baby adopted. With the help of specialist adoption intermediaries, Long Lost Family track down Susan’s daughter to find she is living in Folkestone and the duo are reunited for the first time in 48 years.
To B&B The Best is a Channel 5 programme fronted by Lisa Holloway, who looks at the B&B revolution going on where ordinary homeowners attempt to turn amateur hotelier. Throughout the series, Lisa travels the UK to meet all manner of Brits who are keen on turning their empty rooms into potential goldmines.With her characteristic no-nonsense approach, a modest design budget and no shortage of ideas, Lisa will arm the homeowners with the tools to turn their spare rooms into superb places to stay. But will they follow Lisa’s plan and create successful B&B’s?
Episode twenty four of the new series features Margate in Kent, where she meets English language teacher Martine and her daughter Vibs, who’ve been hosting foreign language students for well over twenty years. Wishing to transform her Victorian townhouse into a boutique B&B, Lisa guides them and discovers the key to their future guests could lie in the towns emerging art scene.
ITV’s Take Me Out returns for an eighth series with Paddy McGuinness hosting the Saturday night dating show in the hope that he can find dates for the “Flirty 30” ladies looking for love.
Single men arrive by the Love Lift and through various rounds, the ladies can turn their lights off if they are no longer interested in them – “No Likey, No Lighty”. Any man who survives with more than one light on, can choose which lady he will take on a date to the Isle of Fernando.
King of matchmaking, Paddy McGuiness, returns for the sixth series of ITV’s popular dating show Take Me Out, where 30 single ladies are all looking for their dream date on the Isle of Fernando with one of the eligible bachelors that arrive via the Love Lift.
The cheeky show sees four brave bachelor boys trying to impress the Flirty Thirty through various rounds, but with the shows catchphrase being “no likey, no lighty”, the women turn their lights off when they are no longer interested in the man, and the boys could face a black out which precedes a lone departure to Celine Dion’s All By Myself.
The new series introduces a twist: the men can choose to opt for a mystery girl based on the sound of her voice.First up are an IT consultant from Leeds, a Birmingham entrepreneur and a music student from Brighton.
The Maidstone Studiosis the UK’s largest independent HD TV studio facility and is based in Maidstone, Kent. The facility boasts 5 studios, a sound stage, post production facilities, storage and over 400 free parking spaces and has previously played host to productions such as The Split 2020.
Don’t miss the new series of Take Me Out which starts on 4th January 2014 at 20:50 on ITV1.