Merlin (2008)

Arthur and Merlin played by Bradley James and Colin Morgan © BBC

Arthur and Merlin played by Bradley James and Colin Morgan © BBC

Director: James Hawes

Writer: Julian Jones

Production Company: Shine

Kent Filming Location: Penshurst Place, Chislehurst Caves

A new prime time drama set in medieval England about the legendary wizard Merlin is due to be screened on BBC One this Autumn!

The programme sees Merlin as a young man at Uther’s Court, where magic is outlawed. Working as Arthur’s manservant, Merlin is forced to keep his magical skills secret.

The 13 part series boasts an impressive cast including Richard Wilson (One Foot in the Grave), Michelle Ryan (Bionic Woman), Anthony Head (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and Santiago Cabrera (Heroes)

Katie McGrath as Morgana in Merlin © BBC

Katie McGrath as Morgana in Merlin © BBC

Filming of Merlin at Penshurst Place © Kent Film Office

Filming of Merlin at Penshurst Place © Kent Film Office

Anthony Head as Uther Pendragon in Merlin © BBC Richard Wilson as Gauis in Merlin © BBC

Merlin was filmed mostly in a studio with Penshurst Place one of only three locations chosen to film on location where the production company Shine visited the unique Baron’s Hall with it’s awe-inspiring height and courtly atmosphere.

Chislehurst Caves features in episode 3, series one for underground scenes where Arthur and Merlin battle the water beast.

Penshurst Place is a beautiful medieval estate with a history spanning nearly 700 years and has been seen on screen for filming projects including The Hollow Crown – Henry V (2012), The Other Boleyn Girl (2008) and The Gathering (2003).

Season 5 aired on BBC 1 on Saturday nights from February 2008.

Links

For more information about filming in Kent please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about the series Merlin visit http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00mjlxv

For more information about Penshurst Place visit http://www.penshurstplace.com/

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: https://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/


Doctor Who – The Mutants (1972)

Jon Pertwee as Doctor Who at Chislehurst Caves

Jon Pertwee as Doctor Who at Chislehurst Caves © BBC

Director: Christopher Barry

Starring: Jon Pertwee, Katy Manning, Paul Whitsun-Jones, James Mellor and Garrick Hagon

Production Company: BBC

Kent locations used: Bluewater Quarry, Chislehurst Caves, Stone House Farm Caves.

The Mutants is a six part story of popular sci-fi show, Doctor Who, starring Jon Pertwee. The Doctor and his companion, Jo, arrive at Skybase One during the 30th century when the planet, Solos is fighting for independence from the Earth’s empire. However, the natives have started to mutate in to hideous looking creatures and the doctor needs to find out why.

Jon Pertwee (Worzel Gummidge, Jackanory) stars as the third Doctor alongside Katy Manning (Gloria’s House, Evil Never Dies), Paul Whitsun-Jones (The Quatermass Experiment, Huntingtower), James Mellor (Marat/Sade, The Oblong Box) and Garrick Hagon (Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory).

The production visited Bluewater Quarry which was the setting for the planet Solos prior to the shopping centre being built. The quarry began in the early 19th century and was then rapidly enlarged for cement production in the 1950’s; however it then closed down in the 1980’s and is now  Bluewater shopping centre.

Chislehurst Caves also feature and doubled as the interior Solos’ caves. Chislehurst Caves are man-made and 22 miles long, initially dug as chalk and flint mines and are believed to have been last worked in during the 1830’s. The first mention of the mines was in 1250, during World War II when the caves became an air raid shelter for 15000 people with electrical lighting, a chapel and a hospital. The caves are now a tourist attraction and have been used for TV series Merlin (2008) and Vinnie Jones film The Riddle (2007).

The production also visited Stone House Farm Caves which represented the cave system entrance on Solos. It is situated near Strood in a field next to Lower Rochester Road. The caves are thought to be old chalk mines. The Medway area has previously been seen on screen in Jekyll and Hyde (2015), Great Expectations (2012) and Canterbury Tales (2003).

Doctor Who: The Mutants was first shown in 1972 and is now available to buy on DVD.

Links

For more information on filming in Kent contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information on Doctor Who visit: http://www.bbc.co.uk/doctorwho/classic/

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: https://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/