Wednesday, August 13, 2014
VISIT THE REAL DOWNTON ABBEY Newbury, Hampshire
Home of the Carnarvon family, sprawling Highclere Castle is set within 1,000 acres of parkland. Longstanding friend of the family Julian Fellowes wrote the Downton Abbey script with this estate in mind and the setting has become home to the fictional Crawley family and their staff.
At Highclere you can immerse yourself in the opulent rooms and lush gardens used during filming. From the grand library to the generous bedrooms, step back in time and imagine yourself as one of the characters in the popular period drama.
After exploring the house and gardens you can travel further in to the past at the estate’s rare Egyptian exhibition. The 5th Earl of Carnarvon discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb and his story is told here.
Be sure to check out the village of Bampton during your visit, which may seem oddly familiar to Downton fans for this is where the village scenes are filmed and where many dramas have been played out in the streets. The set locations for Downton Abbey have become stars in their own right and are as much a character in the series as any of the actors and much more.