The wonders of Wolf Hall by helicopter
Britain is lucky enough to boast some beautiful heritage buildings, which have made ideal filming locations for many period dramas over the years.
The BBC’s latest foray into historical dramas is Wolf Hall. The story has enraptured many, from Hilary Mantel’s original novel to the stage show and now the TV drama. As a result, exploring these grand homes and estates that so perfectly retain their Tudor charm has become a must-do for world travelers.
Heritage and helicopters
Helicopters can land even in quite small areas, so long as they have the landowners permission, thus making them ideal for small tour groups.
You can cover large distances in a very quick amount of time allowing you to see much more in a day than you might without.
Take flight to Wiltshire
Two of the wonderful sites that Wolf Hall was filmed in, Lacock Abbey and Great Chalfield Manor, are located within the rolling hills of Wiltshire.
Lacock Abbey rests in the centre of Lacock village in rural Wiltshire. It used to be home to William Henry Fox Talbot the inventor and photography pioneer.
The abbey sits within its own picturesque woodland grounds and has been used as the set for Cranford, Harry Potter and The Other Boleyn Girl. Henry VIII sold this Augustinian nunnery on to a courtier named Sir William Sharrington who converted the building into a house.
You may recognise Great Chalfield Manor’s interiors as they were used to film Thomas Cromwell’s house in Wolf Hall. This great manor is well documented in history and has stood since the 15th century. It’s sure to appeal to history buffs with its beautiful interiors and arts and crafts garden.
Nip across the countryside to Somerset
About an hour to the west of Wiltshire lies the cheese county of Somerset with two more beautiful heritage sites. Montacute House in southern Somerset is a breathtaking building filled with heritage and is used for the backdrop of several scenes in Wolf Hall, representing Greenwich palace.
The house is a premiere example of Elizabethan mansion architecture, with its use of ham stone and looming glass walls. If you are feeling peckish after a wander around the spacious grounds, Montacute House’s Courtyard cafe is open all day and serves lovely home cooked style meals. Their spring sample menu includes locally reared slow braised beef in red wine and thyme with a dauphinoise to Somerset brie rarebit served with homemade chilli jam.
A short helicopter hop away from this is Barrington Court, one of the few historical homes that remains authentically decorated and free from museum style artifacts. This made it a perfect set for the filming Wolf Hall as they could dress it for their purposes as the home of Cardinal Wolsey.
Finish off in Oxfordshire
Some of the very dramatic and emotional scenes of Cromwell’s Putney childhood were filmed in the courtyard of Chastleton House. The courtyard still bears many of its original features as it has been left unaffected by the 21st century. The same is true for the house which has remained relatively untouched, a part from essential upkeep, since its construction in in the early 1600s!
If you want to make the most of the country and extend your day trip into a long weekend, there are a number of beautiful hotels in the surrounding countryside. Just call the team at Bespoke Air Charter with your requirements.