Filmed in West Bay
Are you a fan of the hit ITV crime drama, Broadchurch? If so, get the lowdown on behind the scenes information of the cast, producers and all the Dorset filming locations.
Broadchurch was penned by Doctor Who and Torchwood writer, Chris Chibnall, with each series boasting a star studded cast including David Tennant, Olivia Colman and Arthur Darvill.
Broadchurch first hit our screens back in March 2013 with the second series following in early 2015 and the final series in 2017. The premise has always been to explore how a tragic incident affects a small, close-knit community, and how the characters react to the media attention and the mutual suspicion that arises. Broadchurch is unique in how it shows how something terrible can happen in such a beautiful place.
The Dorset landscape was always intended to be a main character of the drama; Chris Chibnall wrote Broadchurch "as a love letter to the scenery of the Jurassic Coast which used key landmarks as part of its story.
The landscape informs the drama: the cliffs, the sea, the beach are all key elements of the story."
Intimacy and secrecy surround the series keeping us continually guessing and on the edge of our seats.
The spectacular location not only looked great on screen but it also found it’s way into the hearts of the cast and crew, who have adored Dorset, and who can blame them!
David Tennant, who played DI Alec Hardy commented after filming the last series in Dorset “I will miss our trips to the coast. West Bay and the Jurassic coastline I will definitely need to visit because there is something very special about that place and it is an extraordinary part of the country”.
Olivia Colman, who played DS Ellie Miller talked about Dorset’s beauty when being on location filming for the first series - “being on the cliff at Bridport in the sunshine during the first week of filming was just amazing. Idyllic”
Andy Buchan, who played Mark Latimer was asked if he would miss the locations that have become part of the Broadchurch phenomenon, to which he replied "I think I would take a holiday in Dorset every 10 minutes if I could. It is a spectacular part of the world. From the scenery to the people, the whole package down there is spot on."
Jodie Whittaker who played Beth Latimer comments "I love being in Dorset. It's a brilliant place to be and film".
Julie Hesmondhalgh, who played Trish Winterman in the third series said "Well it was absolutely wonderful being down in Dorset, really beautiful and I had a period of time in the summer when I was down a lot and I had a little caravan on the beach (Freshwater Beach Holiday Park). I used to walk over the cliffs to West Bay to work in the morning and in the middle of summer it was absolutely lovely. It doesn't get any better than that!"
When asked what she thought of West Bay, Eve Myles, who featured in the second series, replied "I'd never been there before - how glorious is that place and why haven't I been before? It's two hours from my house door to door, I'll be going there a lot more. I was spotting out places to take the children next summer. It's beautiful."
Filming on the Jurassic Coast was a real bonus for Pauline Quirke, who played Susan Wright in the first two series, said “I have absolutely fallen in love with the place. I loved being at West Bay and when I got the chance I’d go off exploring. I have been to Lyme Regis and lots of other places just having a wander around with Bailey (her pet Labrador).”
“Even when the weather turned cold it was still beautiful.”
The first series of Broadchurch opened with the stunning cliffs at West Bay towering over the body of schoolboy, Danny Latimer, on the beach below. West Bay took on it's integral role and provided the stunning backdrop for this gripping whodunit drama.
The first series let us delve into the lives of the Broadchurch residents and discover the secrets and lies that wrapped the small town and kept us guessing until the very end who had murdered Danny Latimer.
The dramatic cliffs of West Bay are easily recognisable as the stunning setting of the beach where Danny was found and they featured throughout the series. West Bay was also the setting for the café, police station, newsagents, Sea Brigade Hall and harbour used in the drama with the caravan park and beach hut located nearby at Eype and Freshwater.
The stunning Dorset coastline reprised its starring role alongside David Tennant and Olivia Colman in what was another enthralling series back in January 2015.
Broadchurch series 2 followed 2 plot strands; one focussing on how the local community rebuilt itself after the events of series 1 alongside the trial of Joe Miller and also the re-opening of the Sandbrook case, a previous case of DI Alec Hardy's which held many bad memories and one he'd never been able to move on from. With twists and turns at every corner this series kept us on our toes and guessing once again.
The Dorset landscape once again played its part in telling the story and offered the most stunning backdrop to this amazing drama. We discovered more stunning Dorset locations including the beach huts at Charmouth, The Knoll at Punknowle which featured alongside the easily recognisable towering cliffs and beach at West Bay which are now so symbolic to the hit show. You may remember the bluebell woods which were integral to the Sandbrook case, this was filmed in Hooke Woods near Beaminster which is just up the road from West Bay!
Filming for the third and final series took place in Dorset throughout 2016 with an impressive ensemble cast. David Tennant and Olivia Colman reprised their roles as DI Alec Hardy and DS Ellie Miller with Jodie Whittaker and Andrew Buchan returning playing Beth and Mark Latimer.
They were joined by National Television award winner Julie Hesmondhalgh, BAFTA winner Georgina Campbell along with Sarah Parish, Sir Lenny Henry, Charlie Higson and Mark Bazeley who played significant roles in the 8 part series.
Arthur Darvill also returned as local vicar Paul Coates, Carolyn Pickles as newspaper editor Maggie Radcliffe and Adam Wilson as Ellie's son Tom.
The final series saw detectives, Miller and Hardy, reuniting to investigate a serious sexual assault. The final series in the trilogy started three years on from where we left it and we found out how Beth and Mark had come to terms to with the death of their son, Danny, and how life had changed for them.
The stunning towering cliffs at West Bay were once again an integral part of the show and are one of the things we have all grown to love about the setting of Broadchurch. The police station, harbour and pier, also located in West Bay, also played their part in this third and final series.
We saw new Dorset locations on screen including Littlebredy; Bridehead House was the setting used for Axehampton House with the lake and waterfall also set in the village.
We also saw Washingpool Farm being used as Flintcombe Farm Shop and the Watch House Cafe in West Bay is where Beth met Trish for their first meeting.
We loved seeing West Bay and the surrounding area play it's integral role to the series once again!
Looking to visit some of the specific Broadchurch filming locations? Our Broadchurch Trail will help you discover some of the key filming locations used in each of the series - immerse yourself in the surroundings and retrace the footsteps of the characters you've avidly followed.
It’s no wonder that Dorset has captivated film and TV makers; with unspoilt countryside, dramatic coastline and views that you can only dream about, it makes the perfect backdrop.
So, if you are a Broadchurch fan, why not book a break to Dorset and experience the Broadchurch location for yourself - come and visit the locations that found a place in your hearts, follow in the footsteps of the characters you’ve avidly followed.
Why not book on a Broadchurch walking tour....you could follow a similar route to the one that inspired Chris Chibnall to write the story at the very start!
Immerse yourself in the surroundings and let your imagination do the rest….discover the beauty of Dorset and the stunning scenery that stole the show and fall in love with the wonderful Dorset landscape yourself
So what are you waiting for? Get started now and discover the real 'Broadchurch'
West Bay is located along the world-famous Jurassic Coast and was the stage for ITV's Broadchurch.
Visit the locations in West Bay where ITV's award winning drama series Broadchurch was filmed.
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