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Film and TV starring roles for Hever Castle come under the spotlight

By Angela Cole

Lights, camera, action... the starring role Hever Castle has played on stage and screen is coming under the spotlight.

Visitors to Hever Castle will be able to see posters and costumes from films it has appeared in as part of a new small temporary exhibition.

Two dresses from the film Anne of the Thousand Days, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, and a sword dredged from the moat after filming for The Passionate Pilgrim starring Eric Morecambe and Tom Baker - who used to live in Lenham - will be among the items on display.

Judi Dench filmed at Hever Castle in 2015
Judi Dench filmed at Hever Castle in 2015

The story of the mysterious La Peregrina Pearl will be available for visitors to explore as part of the new exhibition. Bought by actor Richard Burton for Elizabeth Taylor during their first marriage, the $11millon dollar pearl was seen on screen for the first time at Hever Castle when Taylor played a cameo role in Anne of the Thousand Days (1969), having been rejected for the coveted part of Anne Boleyn. During its visit to Hever, the pearl was briefly reunited with two Hever portraits which depict it being worn on the Queens who once owned it: Mary I and Elizabeth de Valois.

Helena Bonham Carter filmed at Hever Castle and Gardens
Helena Bonham Carter filmed at Hever Castle and Gardens

During the filming of a sword fight on Hever Castle’s drawbridge for the 1984 short film The Passionate Pilgrim, Tom Baker lost his grip on the sword and it was sent flying into the moat.

Twenty-seven years later, when the castle’s moat was drained, it was discovered in the silt, and will be displayed for the first time at Hever during the exhibition.

Film crews are regularly at Hever Castle and Gardens
Film crews are regularly at Hever Castle and Gardens

Photographs from an opera about Thomas Boleyn performed for the previous owners, the Astors in 1972 and also images from some of the TV programmes Hever Castle has appeared in will also be available to see.

Hever Castle
Hever Castle


The Hever Castle: On Stage and Screen opens on Monday, May 13 and runs until November. It will be in the castle’s Moat Room, which is not usually open to the public, and is included as part of

castle and garden admission. To find out more go to hevercastle.co.uk or call 01732 865224.

The castle is also home to the Festival Theatre this summer. Click here to find out what's on.

Read more: All the latest events and film news across Kent

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