Places cared for by the National Trust have provided the backdrop to some unmissable scenes in TV and film – including three of this year’s Oscar nominees.
So if you enjoyed The Darkest Hour, Phantom Thread and Victoria & Abdul, you can follow in the footsteps of Gary Oldman, Daniel Day-Lewis and Judi Dench and explore their historic locations – beginning with Winston Churchill’s former home.
1. The Darkest Hour – Chartwell
Oscar nominations: 6
Gary Oldman’s acclaimed portrayal of Winston Churchill during the early days of World War II has seen him nominated for Best Actor at the 2018 Academy Awards, whilst his remarkable physical transformation has been recognised in the categories of Best Make Up and Best Costume Design. Churchill’s former home Chartwell, owned by the National Trust, also plays a starring role.
Just as Oldman and co-star Kristin Scott Thomas were given a tour of the house during filming, visitors too can explore Winston Churchill’s much-loved family home. Upstairs at Chartwell there’s a museum and uniform room, while a temporary exhibition offers a chance to learn about the role of Clementine Churchill as wife to one of Britain’s most famous politicians. In the gardens see the spot where Churchill used to sit, or discover the wall he built with his own hands.
Where to stay:
The Octavia Hill bunkhouse is a former farm building and dairy in Kent. Packed with original features, the bunkhouse is located on the 80-acre Outridge Farm, part of the Toys Hill estate. It sleeps 14, so it’s perfect for large groups looking for a countryside getaway.
Daniel Day-Lewis’ starring role as a renowned 1950s dressmaker in Phantom Thread has earned praise across the board, with nominations at the Oscars, BAFTAs and Golden Globes. Set amidst stunning scenery on the North Yorkshire coast, the film features Robin Hood’s Bay, a 17th century fishing village, as the backdrop to one of the film’s pivotal scenes.
A view over Robin Hood’s Bay
At Robin Hood’s Bay, film fans can visit the cliff-top Victoria Hotel where Daniel Day-Lewis meets his on-screen leading lady for the first time. Soak up Oscar-worthy views of the Bay on an easy walking trail around Ravenscar. Or stop by the Old Coastguard Station to learn more about the area’s distinctive geography; the Cleveland Way National Trail and Cinder Track cycle route along the old railway line passes the door.
Boatman’s Loft used to be the Coastguard Station
Where to stay:
Boatman’s Loft is a red-roofed cottage on the edge of the beach. It’s owned by the National Trust and used to be the Coastguard Station. The newly converted loft space sleeps two and prices start from £249 for three nights in March.
The unlikely friendship between Queen Victoria and a young Indian clerk took centre stage in Stephen Frears’ drama Victoria & Abdul. Dame Judi Dench’s portrayal of the monarch earned the British star a Best Actress nomination at the Golden Globes. The National Trust’s Ham House, on the bank of the Thames in Richmond, hosted the extravagant banqueting scene.
The 17th-century mansion Ham House
Walk through the grounds of the magnificent 17th century Ham House which accommodated the cast and crew of Victoria & Abdul for three days in October 2016. Learn about the mansion’s architecture on a free 30-minute tour or explore the private apartments of the Duke and Duchess of Lauderdale on the ground floor.
Fashion enthusiasts who enjoyed the Oscar-nominated costumes in Victoria & Abdul will appreciate Ham House’s new exhibition. Six costumes inspired by works of art and created by expert tailors for BBC4 documentary A Stitch in Time are now on show.
Where to stay:
Garden Cottage sits next to the rose gardens of the Polesden Lacey estate, which is less than an hour’s drive from London. The Regency-style villa was remodelled in the early 20th century and now plays host to a spacious three-bedroom holiday home with elegant décor. You’ll have uninterrupted views over the formal gardens and beyond to the rolling Surrey Hills. The wider estate provides miles of waymarked trails through woodland and over rolling hills. It sleeps six and costs £977 for two nights in March.