Harry Potter spotted at the Dartford River Crossing
PUBLISHED: 09:43 25 November 2010 | UPDATED: 09:57 25 November 2010
Harry Potter fans will be more used to the mystical surroundings of Hogwarts, but fans of the seventh installment of the box office hit are realising the wizardry is closer to home.
Scenes in the first part of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows clearly show Daniel Radcliffe and Robbie Coltrane, who plays Hagrid, race through the Dartford Tunnel before taking to the air on a flying motorbike with the Queen Elizabeth 11 Bridge in the background.
In July last year the Times exclusively revealed filming was taking place at the famous Dartford landmark as crew spent about a week based at the nearby Hilton Hotel, Crossways, while night scenes were filmed from a helicopter.
Gabrielle Linderman, who has worked at the Kent Film Office since its launch in 2006, was key in helping Warner Bros secure the location and says north Kent has a lot to offer.
She said: “It is a big business and anything that can put Kent on the global map and get the area that sort of exposure has many rewards,
“Millions of people will see the Dartford Crossing in the background and two of the films biggest stars race through the tunnel.
“Part of my job is to liase with the locations officers and help them find the right place for filming. I worked with Warner Bros on this scene location and although the scene maybe only a couple of minutes the benefits are huge.
“Not only does the area get featured on one of the most successful films ever but the the vast crews stay in the area and pump money in to our local economy.
“There are about 380 location managers and scouts in this country. If we can show we have the expertise and infrastructure to make it work, which we do, there is no reason why we should not see more filming for blockbusters.”
At the time of filming more than 40 vehicles for filming were supplied by www.movievehicles.com as as producer David Barron recreated a packed crossing to add to the drama and realism of the high speed chase.
Filming in the area is not unique, with a scene from the comedy cult teenage show The Inbetweeners also shot at Central Park, Dartford, earlier this year starring lead actor James Buckley.
Mrs Linderman, who worked for the BBC as a film locations manager for 15 years, added: “There are all sorts of locations that can be used. At first Warmer Bros where looking at the Roundhill Tunnel in Folkestone but they needed a double ended tunnel and the crossing fit the bill perfectly.
“Neraby Cobham Hall, an independent school, has seen many film crews in recent years with scenes shot for films Wild Child, Bleak House and Agent Cody Banks.”
Other locations available in the area include Eastern Quarry, near Bluewater shopping centre, Lullingstone Country Park and a Victorian classroom as the Horton Kirby Environmental Education Centre.
Have you seen filming where you live? Call the newsdesk on 020 8269 7015.
l See page 21 for Melody Foreman’s review of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.