Love TV? Then you’ll love Yorkshire. Circular trips from the fantastic cities of Leeds or York will take you through scenes from Britain’s best-loved TV programmes and fi lms. Groups can call in at the county’s best attractions, towns and villages along the way

The picturesque setting of Yorkshire is home to several TV and film sets. JULIET PHOTOGRAPHY

The picturesque setting of Yorkshire is home to several TV and film sets. JULIET PHOTOGRAPHY

AN ITINERARY FROM LEEDS
You don’t have to be a football fan to visit Elland Road Stadium. The stands here were also the filming location for the opening scenes of The King’s Speech, where Colin Firth stood to impersonate the awkward stuttering of King George VI.

You could easily spend a few days exploring everything Leeds has got to offer.

The cultural offering here is rich and varied, including Opera North and the Northern Ballet – the UK’s only opera and ballet companies outside of London. Shop at the stalls in Kirkgate Market and the designer boutiques in the stained glass Victorian Quarter before exploring the Cultural Quarter’s closely clustered museums, including Leeds Art Gallery and the Henry Moore Institute.

The Emmerdale set has even made it onto a stamp

The Emmerdale set has even made it onto a stamp

Move north to the charming, well-heeled town of Harrogate. On the way, you’ll pass Harewood Estate, which is the site for the set of Emmerdale. Unfortunately, this is a closed set, but you can visit the many other outdoor locations featured in the popular soap over the years.

Wander around the market town of Otley (the fictional Hotton) and the beautiful village of Esholt, where you can have a pint or two in the original Woolpack before driving past the farm near Leathley, where the series was originally filmed.

To the North West, in the heart of the Dales, is where heart-warming comedy movie The Calendar Girls was filmed. Local guide Malcolm Hanson was an extra in the film.

Hire him for a group tour aboard your own transport and he’ll regale your party with behind-the-scenes titbits. Burnsall was used as the location for the village show scenes and the Tennants Arms at Kilnsey was where the men awaited the production of the calendar.

Kettlewell features in the film, as does Settle, Skipton and Ilkley.

To the South of the National Park, the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway wends its way through the Worth Valley. This line and the villages that surround it have formed the setting for many different television programmes and films. The steam railway itself has featured in productions such as Last of the Summer Wine, Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em, The Royal and A Touch of Frost.

Perhaps most famously, the area – and some of the railway’s trains – feature in 1970s film, The Railway Children. A trip on the five-mile track through Yorkshire’s industrial heritage heartland will definitely evoke Edith Nesbit’s era, as you spot glimpses of England at the turn of the 20th century. The village of Holmfirth in West Yorkshire still draws in the crowds who once enjoyed Britain’s longest-running comedy TV series, Last of the Summer Wine.

Visitors can hop aboard a bus tour and enjoy a 10-mile drive around the various hills and valleys used during the show. Interestingly, the tour itself is run by the former owner of Sid’s Café – an associate of the cast and crew for many years. Bill Owen, who played Compo, made the area his second home and is buried in the nearby village of Upperthong.

Visit the exhibition inside his former house, where a collection of photographs and memorabilia are displayed. Many of the canal scenes in Last of the Summer Wine were filmed at Slaithwaite, which is frequently used as a location in ITV’s Where the Heart Is.

It’s well worth a trip out to Oakwell Hall before returning to Leeds.

Located to the South West of the city, this magnificent Elizabethan manor house was one of the main filming locations for the ITV adaptation of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights. Built in the 1690s, the house is surrounded by 110acres of ‘Green Flag’ award winning Country Park.

Lost in Austen was also filmed here. If the weather’s fair, call in at Hepworth Wakefield and the outdoor Yorkshire Sculpture Gallery. A mere 20-minute drive apart, these venues are celebrating the career of one of Britain’s greatest sculptors, Sir Anthony Caro, from July 18 until November 1, 2015. Both offer free entry and add-on experiences, such as gallery and curatorial tours costing from as little as £10 per person. Find out more about Yorkshire’s sculptural heritage by booking onto the Yorkshire Greats Tour, where you will spend 45 minutes at each venue at a cost of £50 per group (maximum of 30). Extra group benefits include 10% off food and drink and a free goodie bag for group leaders.

BRONTE PARSONAGE MUSEUM

The Bronte Parsonage Museum houses the world’s largest collection of furniture, clothes and personal possessions owned by the Bronte family, offering an inspirational and evocative experience for people of all ages.

The Bronte Parsonage Museum presents a regularly changing programme of exhibitions, contemporary arts events and family activities. The Bronte’s, War and Waterloo is the Bronte Parsonage Museum’s current exhibition, which explores the Bronte family’s fascination with war. The Bronte’s, War and Waterloo presents a number of intriguing items, including a fragment of Napoleon Bonaparte’s coffin and a letter to Patrick Bronte from the Duke of Wellington. The Bronte Society will celebrate the bicentenary of the birth of Charlotte Bronte in 2016, Branwell in 2017, Emily in 2018 and Anne in 2020. For more information visit www.bronte.org.uk

AN ITINERARY FROM YORK
York is a gorgeous city of honey-coloured stone and elegant spires, and is an excellent base for exploring Yorkshire. Don’t miss the glorious York Minster, the location for Cate Blanchett’s portrayal of Queen Elizabeth I during her coronation in 1998 movie, Elizabeth.

Explore York and its Minster. GARETH BUDDO

Explore York and its Minster. GARETH BUDDO

York Minster is one of the world’s most magnificent structures, sparkling with stained glass and multimedia galleries full of information about the history of the building.

Groups can book guided tours at no extra cost, taking visitors behind the scenes to the Bell Towers and Masons Loft, whilst ongoing restoration of the stained glass windows and stonework takes place. The group admission price is £8.50 per adult.

River cruises along the Ouse can be a great way to see the city.

Boats depart at least four times a day, with more frequent departures in the summer months.

Groups get a discounted rate, with a free place for every 20 passengers. You’ll be in good hands with YorkBoat – finalists for great customer service with both Visit York and the White Rose Awards 2012. Leave York and start wending your way towards the North York Moors.

On the way, stop in at Newby Hall and Gardens, where the ITV adaptation of Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park was filmed in the summer of 2006. Crusoe was also filmed here.

Take a turn in the gardens or visit the interior of the house, which was built in the 1690s by Sir Christopher Wren. The VIP Package includes a tour of the house before it is open to the public, in the company of knowledgeable guides, and includes coffee upon arrival, served in the splendid Adam Entrance Hall, and a complimentary souvenir guidebook. Groups of 15 or more can benefit from discounted entry plus free entry for group leaders, couriers and coach drivers.

Whitby credit Constantin Stanciu and Shutterstock.com

Coach parking is free and there’s also very good disabled access, with free wheelchairs available that can be booked in advance. Various group menus for drinks, afternoon tea and light meals can be reserved for you to enjoy some restful moments in the pretty Grantham Room.

Into the Moors and to the village of Thirsk, which featured in beloved TV drama All Creatures Great and Small. The World of James Herriot is a unique tribute to the vet and author.

Based in his original surgery, the attraction takes visitors on a journey back to the 1940s.

Learn what it’s like to be a vet in the interactive vet’s surgery and farm, and check out the exhibits in the only veterinary science museum in the country. Relive the TV series in the three studio sets, which include many original props. The attraction was voted the Best Visitor Attraction in Yorkshire at the 2015 Welcome to Yorkshire’s White Rose Tourism Awards.

Deeper into the moors you’ll pass through Goathland, which also featured in the series as the fictional ‘Aidensfield.’ The village’s railway station is part of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway and is now even more famous as ‘Hogsmeade’ in the first Harry Potter film.

The railway’s shop was transformed into the ‘Prefect’s Room’ and the Ladies toilets became the ‘Wizard’s Room.’ There must be something special about Goathland, because it was also used in the TV series Heartbeat. As you reach the coast, head for the traditional fishing port of Whitby.

Many scenes from classic movies Dracula (1931) and Count Dracula (1977) were filmed here.

The gothic appearance of Whitby Abbey, teetering on the cliff edge, may have inspired Bram Stoker’s novel from 1897. It is now an English Heritage site with an excellent visitor centre.

Back in town, explore the cobbled streets and historic fishermen’s cottages, and take a gander at the Whalebone Arch and bronze statue, which commemorate Whitby’s most famous son, Captain James Cook, who was once an apprentice here. The ships used on his three world voyages were built on the banks of the Esk. Before returning to York, you might like to visit 18th century Castle Howard, the elegant setting for Brideshead Revisited.

Castle Howard has a spectacular house and grounds, accompanied by a packed programme of events. VISIT YORK

Castle Howard has a spectacular house and grounds, accompanied by a packed programme of events. VISIT YORK

The site was used for the original film in 1981, and again for the new version, filmed in 2007. With its spectacular house and grounds, a packed programme of exhibitions and events, a choice of restaurants and cafés, gift shops, a farm shop and garden centre, there is plenty to see and do onsite. Groups can book private tours and walks around the grounds in advance. After a tour around the dales and cities of Yorkshire, you’ll see why so many of our best-loved programmes and movies have been filmed here.

The JORVIK Group

Over 2000 years of history is waiting to be discovered, with new group offers and packages from The JORVIK Group

JORVIK Battlefield Walk

JORVIK Battlefield Walk

The JORVIK Group, owners of the JORVIK Viking Centre, have released their refreshed group packages, which aim to bring history to life in 2015.

Featuring five historic attractions covering over 2,000 years of York’s history, including the reign of King Richard III, his successor King Henry VII, and the popular Viking Age, The JORVIK Group hopes to entice first time visitors and returning groups alike back to the city of York.

“We’ve been bringing Viking history to life for over 31 years in York and with our new group offering, we’re introducing new and exciting ways for people to explore some of the most interesting periods in York’s past,” comments Sarah Maltby, Director of Attractions at York Archaeological Trust; Owners of The JORVIK Group.

Exclusively for groups, packages have been created for the new guide, including the chance to have a costumed Viking escort groups from the coach park through the city, whilst narrating the history of York, before guiding them through JORVIK Viking Centre.

Here, groups can discover the 4D Viking Age, taking in sights, sounds and smells of the Viking streets and coming face to face with the Norse residents.

Other attractions included are Barley Hall, The JORVIK Group’s medieval townhouse, which was once the home of the Lord Mayor of York. After exploring the rich history of York in the Middle Ages, groups can sit down in the stunning Great Hall for a drinks reception, complete with medieval mead and a full medieval banquet.

Great Hall, Barley Hall

Great Hall, Barley Hall

The Hall recently opened its newest exhibition, Power & Glory: York in the Time of Henry VIII, which explores how the city fared under his reign and includes costumes from popular TV and film adaptations, including Showtime’s The Tudors and the BBC’s classic series The Six Wives of Henry VIII. Visit The JORVIK Group’s newest attractions, the Richard III Experience in Monk Bar and the Henry VII Experience in Micklegate Bar, which can include a guided tour along the ancient city walls with a costumed medieval host, outlining the dark details of the War of the Roses and how two sides battled for control of the country. Groups can discover the impact that each monarch had on the city, with the Richard III Experience at Monk Bar looking at the discovery and reinterment of King Richard III, featuring rare artefacts and remains uncovered from Towton – the location of one of the decisive battles in the War of the Roses.

Joint discounts and special offers mean groups can tailor their day to suit all requirements, with a dedicated booking team to help organise every last detail, from coach parking to entry times and added extras to best suit your group.

For more information, prices and booking details, group organisers can visit The JORVIK Group website at www.thejorvikgroup.com/groups or call the reservation department on 01904 615505. ■