Pottering Around

Last Monday, we went to The Making Of Harry Potter Tour. This was an early start as it’s in Leavesden, just north of Watford. It’s should have been a 2 hour journey but as we had to drive 50% of the M25 to get there, on a Monday morning, we knew it would take much longer. We had the 10.30 entrance slot and didn’t want to be late. So we set off at 5.30 on a dark and drizzly morning, it was so dark it was like driving through velvet. The journey took 4 hours and we got there at 9.30, the first car in the car park and just as they were opening. We had coffee in what must be one of the best located Starbucks, just inside the entrance.

Everything about the day was fantastic. Even if you’re not a Harry Potter fan, I think you would have enjoyed it. The focus was very much about how the films were made and so you could walk through the iconic and breathtaking sets, props and see all the costumes. All of the objects were so beautiful, it was a real treasure trove of intricate and beautifully-made art works and scale models. The way it was set out made you think you were walking through Hogwarts. The sets were fabulous. I was worried that they may seem smaller and unsubstantial in real life but that was not the case. They looked so real, were all life size and I kept on expecting to see the characters popping in and out of the shops in Diagon Alley! The Great Hall was just as imagined, it looked as old and majestic as any great hall that I have seen in a genuine medieval castle. We saw all the animatronic and other special effects. It was a magical day out.

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its home for more than ten years. As the books were still being released while the films were being made, the production crew saved many of the iconic sets, props and costumes that were created especially for the films – just in case they were ever needed later on in the series.

Once filming wrapped on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 in 2010, the production crew were left with a treasure trove of thousands of intricate and beautifully-made artefacts, many of which wouldn’t have been saved on a typical production.

The team behind Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter wanted to preserve and showcase these iconic props, costumes and sets so that Harry Potter fans could experience the magic of filmmaking first-hand. Many of the original cast and crew returned to reassemble the sets and record their memories from filming, and on 31st March 2012, the Studio Tour opened its doors.

Set adjacent to the working film studios where all eight Harry Potter films were made, the Studio Tour offers visitors the unique opportunity to explore two soundstages and a backlot filled with original sets, animatronic creatures and breathtaking special effects.

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