Downton Abbey gets grand new location

The cast of ITV period drama Downton Abbey may be accustomed to their lavish film set.

But now the actors, including Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern and Michelle Dockery, will enjoy a whole new magical experience filming in Alnwick Castle, which famously doubled as Hogwarts in the Harry Potter film franchise.

The general public will have limited access to the Grade I listed building in Northumberland until scenes are completed on 8 August.

Currently the residence of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland, it already attracts around 800,000 visitors a year.

But a filming notice on the venue’s website says: “Please note that various areas of Alnwick Castle will be closed or have limited access on 2 – 8 August (inclusive), due to the filming of a major ITV period drama,” reports the Daily Mail.

The grand 14th century fortress was also used in the films Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, starring with Kevin Costner, and Elizabeth starring Cate Blanchett.

Downton Abbey, series five, will air on ITV later this year.