We’re very lucky to have the picturesque landscape of Northumberland featured in many films and TV shows, immortalising its stunning natural beauty. With its diverse and sprawling landscapes, the gems of Northumberland have become a sought-after destination for filmmakers and tourists alike.
You may already know that the rolling hills of Northumberland stole the heart of the UK TV series, Vera — so grab your magnifying glass and a cuppa, and let’s zoom in on the locations that have played a huge part in the intriguing cases of ITV’s Detective Chief Inspector Vera Stanhope.
What makes Northumberland a unique filming location?
You won’t have to look too hard to find out how popular Northumberland is as a filming location. The walls of Alnwick’s mediaeval Castle alone have welcomed anyone and everyone, from the iconic cast of Downton Abbey to the mystical wizards and witches of Hogwarts in Harry Potter. Due to its vast, contrasting and varied terrain, Northumberland’s vibrant filming history has piqued the interest of viewers, tourists, and filmmakers around the world.
If we go further afield, the iconic crime series Vera showcases the region’s natural beauty, historic towns, and unique landscapes in all their glory — and has done so since 2011. This is down to the fact that Northumberland makes an incredibly striking backdrop to its complex and unsettling detective plot.
Northumberland’s towns and villages through Vera's lens
The charm of Northumberland lies in its towns and villages, each brimming with rich character and history. Vera has brought to life the essence of some of Northumberland’s quaint towns and villages, notably Hexham and Wylam, with their historic streets and picturesque settings. A key pit-stop for any Vera enthusiast on tour! With a variety of B&Bs and hotels in Northumberland, it couldn’t be easier to see the sites in all their glory.
The historical tapestry of Hexham
The market town of Hexham is a gateway to the past. With its ancient abbey and bustling market streets, it is far more than just a scenic location. Hexham is steeped in history, offering a glimpse into the region's rich heritage, as well as boasting an array of independent shops, cosy pubs and restaurants to enjoy throughout your stay.
The riversides of Wylam
Wylam village is another hidden gem in Northumberland's crown, and it has been beautifully captured in Vera over the years of shooting. This tranquil village has serene river walks and a charming ambience that captures the peaceful countryside life, adding depth to the series' spooky narrative.
The Northumberland coastline
Vera's panoramic shots of the Northumberland coastline are nothing short of spectacular. Whether you’re a lover of landscape panoramas or not, there’s no ignoring the dramatic cliffs, sprawling beaches, and the untamed beauty of the rough seas.
Not only has the Northumberland coastline added visual grandeur to the series, but it’s also offered a way for viewers to experience these vistas first-hand. So whether you choose to explore the rugged coastline at Dunstanburgh, explore the vast beach at Bamburgh or head to a more off the beaten track beach like Druridge Bay, you too can enjoy the scenic beauty of Northumberland’s coastline.
Vera Filming Locations in 2023
In the latest series 13 of Vera, we welcomed a new chapter alongside some other sights of Northumberland.
The fictional home of Vera can be found on Lindisfarne Island, also known as ‘Holy Island’, which sits just off the northeast coast. Its beauty lies in the fact that you must travel by the grace of the tides. It’s also known as a ‘thin’ place, where Earth and Heaven are believed to meet. So, while it may be a small, windswept island, it is one of the holiest sites in England with its liminal placement and eye-opening vistas. Definitely worth a visit in our eyes!
An equally captivating location featured in series 13 is Amble Marina, a picturesque spot that adds a touch of maritime charm to the show. Nestled in the heart of Amble, known as 'the friendliest port', this marina is not just a haven for boats but also a scenic backdrop for the series. The marina, with its array of yachts and fishing boats, reflects the town's rich seafaring heritage. Surrounded by quaint shops and local eateries, it offers a glimpse into the everyday life of this vibrant coastal community. The serene ambience of Amble Marina, combined with the stunning views of the North Sea, makes it a location that's as peaceful as it is visually striking, perfect for the mysterious and contemplative scenes in Vera.
Much of the filming of Vera also occurred in Alnmouth, with its colourful houses, tranquil beaches, and bustling wildlife. What’s more, Alnmouth sits in one of Northumberland’s areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. As well as Alnmouth, you will also spy shots of Amble Harbour’s glistening waters, the ancient village of Warkworth, and the magnificent sand dunes of Bamburgh with Lindisfarne Holy Island only a glance away.
Experiencing Northumberland through Vera's eyes
Exploring Northumberland will allow you to step into the world of Vera, discovering it for yourself and not just through your television screen. For those looking to immerse themselves in the region's beauty, why not go for a walk through the lush forests of Northumberland, or experience the great outdoors of Kielder village, forest, and reservoir? The Northumberland National Park is another must-visit for breathtaking scenic views, from peaceful waterfalls to ancient walls lining the Scottish Border. These enchanting locations not only enrich the narrative of Vera but also embody the spirit of Northumberland.
Discover the drama and mystery of Northumberland
There’s no denying that the enchanting allure of Northumberland offers an unforgettable experience for Vera fans. From the historic towns of Hexham and Wylam to the majestic coastline of Amble and Alnmouth — each location in Northumberland is a story waiting to be explored.
Step into the mystery world of Vera and discover the beauty and charm of Northumberland for yourself. Visit Northumberland for all the wonderful sights it has to offer and experience a journey where the stories of Vera and the region intertwine in one memorable adventure.