VCT Filming: South Riding

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Adapted from the novel (published March 1936) by Winifred Holtby.  Screenplay by Andrew Davies

Set in 1934-35, South Riding tells the story of Sarah Burton (played by Anna Maxwell Martin), who lost her chance of marriage and motherhood when her fiancée was killed in the First World War trenches.  Sarah has become a career woman, and comes home from London to Yorkshire to take up the position of headmistress at a Yorkshire high school for girls.


Before the end of the story Sarah Burton must choose between the career she has fought for and the man who has won her heart.


Robert Carne (played by David Morrissey) is a man whose family have farmed the South Riding for hundreds of years. However, Robert Carne has spent much of the family fortune over the past 20 years, haunted by guilt. Katherine McGolpin plays Midge Carne, the daughter of Robert and his first wife.


Alderman Mrs Beddows (played by Penelope Wilton) is the county’s first woman Alderman.  Other characters in the series include Councillor Huggins (played by John Henshaw), the Riding’s only socialist councillor Joe Astell (played by Douglas Henshall), school science mistress Miss Sigglesthwaite (played by Brid Brennan), and 14-year old Lydia Holly (played by Charlie Clark). 


The railway sequences featured Anna Maxwell Martin, Penelope Wilton, and Charlie Clark. Percy the railway guard was played by Bernard Wrigley.



Sarah Burton       Anna Maxwell Martin

Mrs Beddows      Penelope Wilton 

Percy                  Bernard Wrigley

Lydia Holly          Charlie Clark

Characters in other scenes, not involving Vintage Carriages Trust:

Robert Carne        David Morrissey

Shooting date: Wednesday 15 September 2010 at Loughborough station on the Great Central Railway


(set in May 1934)  Episode 1 scenes 03 and 05

(set in Jan 1935)   Episode 3 scenes 62A, 63A, 64, 65

Slates numbers 606 – 621

Carriages provided by Vintage Carriages Trust: Metropolitan Railway Third 465

                                                                    Metropolitan Railway First 509

Other railway carriages used in the scenes:     LNER Pigeon Van 4050

                                                                    LNER Buffet Car 24278

Steam locomotives used:  LMS class 8F no. 8305 (train engine on platform 2)

                                       GCR class 8K no. 102 (stationary on platform 1)  

Executive Producers:  Anne Pivcevic      Hilary Martin

Producer:  Lisa Osborne

Line Producer:  Angie Daniell

Director:    Diarmuid Lawrence

Director of Photography: Alan Almond

1st Assistant Director: Martin Curry

2nd Assistant Director: Sarah Gilham

3rd Assistant Director: John Turner

Art Director:  Chris Roope

Production Buyer / Set Dresser: Duncan Windram-Wheeler

Location Manager:  Luc Webster

Location Assistant: Richard Key

Production Co-ordinator: Lynn Roberts

Sound: Alistair Crocker

Special Effects: Enterprises Unlimited Special Effects

Lighting:  Panalux

Filming locations:
Street scenes in episode 1 were filmed in Saltaire, West Yorkshire


Scenes were filmed inside the Council Chamber of Keighley Town Hall, West Yorkshire


The Manchester Hotel Ballroom scenes were filmed inside the Connaught Rooms in Bradford, West Yorkshire.  Musical soundtrack for the scenes:

The Very Thought of You – modern recording for this programme - originally arranged and recorded by Ray Noble

My Hat’s on the side of my Head  Ray Noble and his Orchestra

Shout For Happiness The New Mayfair Dance Orchestra directed by Ray Noble

Love Is The Sweetest Thing – Ray Noble and his New Mayfair Dance Orchestra with vocal by Al Bowlly

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