What do Brief Encounter, The Trip and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children all have in common? Whether it be a quaint railway station, award winning restaurants or iconic landmarks these and many other television programmes and films have been filmed in Lancashire.
If you’ve ever wondered where your favourite TV series was filmed, or been momentarily distracted by a stunning view in the background of a film and thought you’d like to go there, you are not alone. In fact screen tourism is a growing phenomenon with more people than ever choosing to visit a location they’ve seen on screen. Whether you are inspired by the dramatic scenery or want to re-live your favourite screen moments you are in good company. Lancashire’s historic buildings, countryside and seaside resorts have provided a backdrop for a wide variety of TV programmes and film, some you might have spotted and others that were cleverly disguised.
Bookings to the Inn at Whitewell and Hipping Hall (2016 Boutique accommodation of the year in the Lancashire Tourism Awards) went through the roof after Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon visited during The Trip – a six part comedy drama which saw the pair travelling around Lancashire, Cumbria and Yorkshire posing as restaurant critics. These locations weren’t particularly difficult to pin point but did you spot Queen Street Textile Mill in the Oscar winning The Kings Speech and the TV drama an Inspector Calls? Or perhaps Morecambe Winter Gardens in the mini-series Close to the Enemy?
We didn’t spot Lancaster Castle’s prison in the latest series of Cold Feet but perhaps you did? The prison, only closed to inmates in 2011, was also used in the 2014 film Get Santa starring Jim Broadbent, and this part of the castle is now included on the guided tour if you’re interested to see the location in more detail. More recently Rivington Pike and the surrounding landscape near Chorley provided a suitably dramatic location for A Monster Calls, released in early 2017, staring Sigourney Weaver and Liam Neason as the voice of the monster.
More obvious locations which are also open to the public include Hoghton Tower in Last Tango in Halifax and Stonyhurst College in the ghostly TV movie Tractate Middoth directed by Mark Gatiss, although Stonyhurst is probably still most famous for its appearance in the 1990 film Three Men and a Little Lady staring Tom Selleck. You certainly won’t miss Blackpool in the 2016 film Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. Look out for the Blackpool Tower and Circus, North Pier and the promenade in this Tim Burton blockbuster staring Samuel L Jackson. Tim Burton enjoyed his time filming in Blackpool so much that he switched on the Illuminations in 2015.