15 TV Programmes That Were Shot in Yorkshire
When you watch a TV show set anywhere north of Watford Gap, it’s likely that some of the filming was taken in Yorkshire. With our vast and varied landscapes, industrial regions and generally welcoming folks, why would you look to film elsewhere?
1 – Emmerdale
Launched in 1972 as Emmerdale Farm, this soap opera about the lives of country folk set in a fictional Dales community with a worrying level of crime and man-made disasters still draws audiences of over seven million people, even without Seth Armstrong and Amos Brearly. Once filmed at Esholt, near Bradford, the location is now a purpose-built set on the Harewood House estate, Leeds.
2 – This Is England
Shame Meadows’ cult drama resonating with music lovers all over was set in an unnamed town in the midlands and largely set in Nottingham, but was in fact partly shot in Sheffield. Scenes include being shot in Park Hill, Lowedges, Stannington, Gleadless Valley, and our old site – Norton College.
3 – All Creatures Great and Small
Based on the books of North Yorkshire vet James ‘Alf’ Wight, this endearing series ran for 90 episodes between 1978 and 1990 and told the story of veterinarian James Herriot and his adventures in the rural communities around Hambleton and the north Dales. Its stars included Christopher Timothy, Peter Davison, Robert Hardy and Carol Drinkwater, who were all involved in filming at a wide range of locations across North Yorkshire.
4 – Heartbeat
Set in the 1960s and filmed in and around the village of Goathland on the North Yorkshire Moors, this police drama captured the innocence of the decade in 18 series between 1992 and 2010. Stars included Derek Fowlds, Nick Berry, John Duttine, Tricia Penrose and Philip Franks.
5 – Last of the Summer Wine
Holmfirth provided the backdrop for the delightfully daft and endearing drama written by Roy Clarke whose comedy creations Foggy, Compo, Clegg and Nora Batty got up to all manner of escapades (many involving a tin bath on wheels) between 1973 and 2010.
6 – Last Tango in Halifax
The presence of Sarah Lancashire, Derek Jacobi and Anne Reid helped but stunning scripts from Sally Wainwright about the trials and tribulation of finding love late in life helped make this romantic drama a massive hit between 2012 and 2015.
7 – Open All Hours
The genius of Ronnie Barker’s performance as stammering, love-hungry shopkeeper Arkwright and Roy Clarke’s pin-sharp scripts made this sit-com set in a corner shop in Balby, Doncaster, a huge success during its 26 episodes that were first broadcast between 1973 and 1985.
8 – Happy Valley
Sarah Lancashire and Sally Wainwright struck TV gold again in 2014 with the BAFTA award-winning police drama filmed in Huddersfield, Hebden Bridge, Sowerby Bridge, Keighley, Luddenden, Todmorden, Heptonstall, Halifax and Huddersfield. A second series starts next month.
9 – Educating Yorkshire
First broadcast in 2013, this uplifting and insightful documentary captured the lives of the teachers and pupils at Thornhill Academy, Dewsbury, and won an Emmy and National Television Award, as well as hero status for its headmaster, Jonny Mitchell.
10 – DCI Banks
Based on the Inspector Alan Banks novels by Canadian-based Yorkshire writer Peter Robinson, DCI Banks ran for 26 episodes between 2010 and 2015 with Stephen Tompkinson in the title role. It was filmed at over 40 locations around Yorkshire.
11 – Where The Heart Is
Originally starring Sarah Lancashire and Pam Ferris, this series also featured Philip Middlemiss, Samantha Giles, Leslie Ash and Lesley Dunlop and told the story of district nurses in the fictional town of Skelthwaite. Its 110 episodes were largely filmed in Marsden, Slaithwaite and Meltham.
12 – Peaky Blinders
The Peaky Blinders were a Birmingham-based gang whose exploits were captured in two six-part series first aired on BBC Two in 2013 and 2014. A third series is currently being filmed. Although set in the Midlands, Yorkshire film locations include Leeds City Varieties; Bolton Abbey; Undercliffe Cemetery, Bradford; Peel Park, Bradford; Leeds Town Hall; Ilkley Winter Gardens; Newby Hall and Gardens; Saltaire; and the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway.
13 – The Great Train Robbery
Yorkshire locations featured prominently in two feature-length dramas for BBC One in 2013 which coincided with the 50th anniversary of the historic heist in 1963. The cast list was led by Luke Evans and Jim Broadband, and locations included the Adelphi pub and Hyde Park Picture House in Leeds; Bradford city centre; Bradford City Hall; Buttershaw; Shipley; Howarth; Filey and Goole.
14 – Unforgiven
Suranne Jones played the lead role in this 2009 three-part drama from the pen of Sally Wainwright which won a Royal Television Society award as best drama serial. Much of the filming took place in Boothtown, Halifax.
15 – The Syndicate
Kay Mellor has penned three series of The Syndicate, each of which tell the stories of a group of friends following lucrative lottery wins. Series 1 (2012) starred Timothy Spall, Matthew Lewis and Joanna Page and was filmed in and around Leeds; Series 2 (2013) featured Alison Steadman, Siobhan Finneran and Mark Addy and was based in Bradford; Series 3 (2015) starred Lenny henry, Alice Krige and Anthony Andrews and was filmed at Bramham Park, which provided the setting for the fictitious Hazelwood Manor.
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