Sunday, 2 July 2017

Bampton, England


   
Besides Highclere Castle the town of Bampton is also seen in every season of DOWNTON ABBEY as the village of Downton. Bampton is situated in the county Oxfordshire, about an hour drive from Highclere Castle.

Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Although it may look as a complete village, basically only one location was used for all outdoor scenes, see also the map below. By using inventive camera views it looks like multiple streets onscreen. The square is well preserved, only cars reveal the modern age. Still, the production team had to remove or mask all kinds of small objects that were not around a hundred years ago.
Warning: the text may give away details of the plot.





 
1 Church View - square
The square and the three adjoining streets are all called Church View, a name that is also being used in the series. On the square are a large tree and two benches, one was removed for the location shoot. The sign post directing towards the library was replaced by a prop, now indicating distances to Ripon and Thirsk. Unlike Downton these villages do exist.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 1, 0:22:04
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 1, 0:26:23
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:11:41
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 3, 0:05:3
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 4, 0:40:53
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

The wall with the buttresses is also a piece of set dressing, probably to mask the modern extensions of the buildings behind it. Outdoor lamps above the doors were removed. In the meantime some doors have gotten a different colour or maybe were repainted especially for the series.

Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 7, 0:14:59
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 7, 0:15:02
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

In episode 2 of the fourth season Joseph Molesley (Kevin Doyle) works as a roadworker, much to his regret. Anna (Joanne Froggatt) tries to cheer him up. Isobel Crawley meets the dowageress Violet Crawley (Maggie Smith) and Lord Merton, Richard Grey (Douglas Reith).

Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 2, 0:06:20
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 2, 0:06:21
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 3, 0:26:33
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 8, 0:40:27
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

To commemorate those who died during the First World War, a memorial will be erected in the fifth season. Mr. Carson (Jim Carter) and Lord Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) examine the square as a possibility. For this scene, the wall with the buttresses as seen in previous episodes was not used.

Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 2, 0:37:46
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 2, 0:38:19
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

When a special commemorative stone is revealed with the name of her nephew, Mrs. Patmore (Lesley Nicol) is moved to tears.

Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 8, 1:01:41
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

In the first episode of the final season Kilmore House can be seen, a residence that has no special meaning in the series. The stone pile and the memorial are both props.

Downton Abbey, season 6, episode 1, 0:10:20
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 6, episode 3, 0:40:26
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

2 St. Mary the Virgin - church
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Known as St. Michael and All Angels in Downton Abbey, in reality the church is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It is unknown when the church was founded, the earliest document that mentions the church is dated 1068. The building was destroyed during the siege of Bampton in 1142, only the tower was preserved. The present church was built in 1270 and has since then been remodelled several times. The churchyard surrounding the building was closed in1898 for new burials.

The church has its own website with more information on the history. The church is open for visitors every day during daylight. A small collection of photographs made during filming of Downton Abbey are exposed inside the church.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 4, 0:44:58
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017

Both exterior and interior shots are seen in the series. Anna and Mr. Bates (Brendan Coyle) visit the church in episode 5 of season 2, hoping one day they could be married here.

Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 5, 0:08:51
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 5, 0:09:20
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017

In episode 8 of the same season Lavinia Swire (Zoe Boyle), the fiancee of Matthew, dies of Spanish flu and is buried at the churchyard.

Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 0:58:48
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 0:59:01
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 0:59:22
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 0:59:37
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 1:00:00
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 1:03:52
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 8, 1:07:23
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017

In the third season both Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) and Lady Edith (Laura Carmichael) are married. The latter however is being left at the altar by her husband-to-be, Sir Anthony Strallan (Robert Bathurst).

Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 1, 1:03:30
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 1, 1:05:18
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 3, 0:32:58
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 3, 0:34:26
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017

Besides at the square, characters also meet at the churchyard. These examples are all from season 4.

Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 1, 0:06:07
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 5, 0:08:30
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 6, 0:06:00
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 6, 0:06:14
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017

In the final season Mrs. Hughes (Phyllis Logan) and Mr. Carson are married. Lord Merton hopes to wed Isobel Crawley. His advances are closely watched by Violet Crawley.

Downton Abbey, season 6, episode 3, 0:41:38
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 6, episode 3, 0:42:12
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 6, episode 8, 1:09:33
St. Mary the Virgin, Bampton, 29 April 2017

3 Churchgate House - Crawley residence
In the second episode of season 1 Isobel Crawley and her son Matthew arrive in Downton. Their new home is the house next to the church, aptly named Churchgate House.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:00:53
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:01:11
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017

The modern signs ‘Churchgate House’ and ‘Slippery flagstones’ were removed during filming. Only the exterior was used, all interior shots were made at West Wycombe House.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:01:23
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:04:17
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017

This a private home and not open to the public, but from both the square and the churchyard the house is visible, despite the stone wall that surrounds it.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 4, 0:04:32
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 4, 0:10:01
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 4, 0:11:41
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 4, 0:09:57
Churchgate House, Bampton, 29 April 2017

4 Bampton Library - hospital
The Bampton Library used to be a grammar school. The exterior, mainly the entrance, was used as the local hospital. During our visit the building was being renovated and surrounded by scaffoldings but was open. The library has a free photo exhibition on Downton Abbey and there are souvenirs on sale. The opening hours are clearly visible next to the entrance.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:11:46
Bampton Library, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:47:58
Bampton Library, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 2, 0:05:29
Bampton Library, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 1, 0:35:31
Bampton Library, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 6, episode 8, 0:44:58
Bampton Library, Bampton, 29 April 2017

5 Church View - post office and pub
The two roads left of the library are both called Church View. Two houses in the street most left were chosen as the post office and the pub of Downton. The house on the corner is the post office, seen in the first scene of the first episode when a telegram arrives to inform the Crawley family that the Titanic has sunken.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 1, 0:26:18
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 5, 0:10:38
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 3, 0:04:05
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

Another house further down the street was transformed into The Dog and Duck, the local pub. This name is often being used for pubs in England. This street also had several objects removed or masked.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 4, 0:32:16
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 4, 0:31:02
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 8, 0:56:48
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

6 Church View - street at library side
The street directly at the side of the library is seen in a few episodes, mainly as background when two or more characters meet.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 5, 0:10:00
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 5, 0:10:34
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 8, 1:02:43
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 5, episode 8, 1:03:22
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

7 Church View - inn
The first house at Church View seen coming from the north (on the map right), situated opposite the church, was chosen to be The Grantham Arms. Tom Branson (Allen Leech) stays at this inn after being dismissed as chauffeur. Matthew successfully persuades him to return to Downton Abbey.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:00:41
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 2, episode 6, 0:38:23
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 1, 0:28:49
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 1, 0:28:55
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017
Downton Abbey, season 3, episode 1, 0:29:21
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

8 Church View - north
This part of Church View, a road with brick walls on each side, is seen only at the beginning of one episode when a car arrives in Downton. The red object on the left is a mailbox.

Downton Abbey, season 1, episode 2, 0:00:35
Church View, Bampton, 29 April 2017

Screenshots © Carnival Film & Television
Plattegrond © Google Earth

 

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