Over the last year or 2, I’ve been continuing to visit various Harry Potter film sights around the country (dragging Rob along with me). This post almost finishes the whole list of Harry Potter sights I aimed to see!
Let’s start at the beginning. One of the more iconic sights from the first few films is Platform 9 3/4 – a brick wall between train platforms. However, for the first couple of years I was in Cambridge, Platform 9 3/4 was hidden behind scaffolding while King’s Cross Station was being renovated. How frustrating! Well now the half trolley is out in the main foyer for tourists to visit. Easy peasy!
Finally we were visiting the original entrance to the Leaky Cauldron from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Previously, we had visited the ‘other’ entrance to the Leaky Cauldron used in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in Borough Market, but its not as iconic. This one is in Leadenhall Market in London and is actually an optometrist! The market is closed in the weekend as its in the middle of the financial district, but you can still wander through the market.
Like Platform 9 3/4, this sight wasn’t actually used in the film I don’t think, but is still worth a post. This street, Artillery Passage, *might* have been used for filming some scenes of Diagon Alley. More likely, it was inspiration. Regardless, its a tiny dimly lit passage that is quite sweet.
In Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (the 6th film), Deatheaters launched various attacks on London, including demolishing the Millennium Bridge – a popular pedestrian bridge across the Thames. I love the fact that St Pauls is perfectly lined up at the other end of this photo, but it wasn’t super prominent in the film itself.
Now moving out of London to Oxford, visiting our last Harry Potter sight there. When we last visited Oxford, we didn’t make it to New College where Malfoy was turned into a ferret in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. The cloisters of New College were used for a few scenes general school scenes too. They were beautiful cloisters, and a lovely college to visit too.
The last Harry Potter film location for this post is up in Durham at the wonderful Durham Cathedral. Rob and I visited this the cathedral over a year ago and didn’t know it was a Harry Potter film location! We since found out that many of the sights attributed to Lacock Abbey online were in fact filmed at Durham Cathedral. The only reason we know it was Durham was because of the shapes of the windows in the cloisters – they’re quite different! Here’s a picture of the cloisters and Durham Cathedral tower.
Here’s a zoom of the cloister windows with their simple but unique shape. You can see them in the background of these film shots from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
The cloisters themselves were used for corridors of Hogwarts in the first 2 films. The first film shot was modified to have windows on both sides, though, but its still Durham Cathedral from the shape of the windows.
Harry Potter might be a geeky thing, but the film locations the directors selected for the various films are lovely parts of the country. Wandering around London, visiting beautiful colleges in Oxford and grand cathedrals in Durham – we’re hitting all the tourists spots just by following the film locations.
But we have ONE Harry Potter sight left on our list of Harry Potter film locations. This June, we’re hopefully going to visit Professor Flitwick’s Charms Classroom which was a 17th century classroom at Harrow School. The school offers public tours once a quarter, and the next one is June! I’m looking forward to it – it’ll be the end of a geeky touristy era.
But that’s then. We’ve just come back from a holiday to Luxembourg and the Nederlands so want to tell you about the cities there first.
Until next time,