Where is Broadchurch filmed?
Broadchurch was filmed in West Bay, near Bridport, in Dorset, England. West Bay has previously been the setting for the BBC TV series, ‘Harbour Lights’, but the most recent publicity has resulted from the award winning ITV crime drama, ‘Broadchurch’, the first series of which was broadcast in 2013 and starred David Tennant and Olivia Colman as the detectives hunting for the murderer of an eleven year old boy (Danny Latimer). The spectacular East Cliff and beach feature in the series and Quay West, the apartment development, appears as the exterior of the police station. ‘Broadchurch’ won the award from the British Academy for the 2014 Best TV Drama and Olivia Colman, Best Leading Actress. Villages that have appeared in Broadchurch, have received a boost in tourism, especially West Bay and Bridport.
Photos of West Bay (the real Broadchurch)
Here is a small selection of photos of West Bay, Dorset – the setting for Broadchurch, but there are many more available on my West Bay page.
Broadchurch series one
Interviews with the cast
Broadchurch cast: views on West Bay
The Visit Dorset website has compiled a list of quotes from the cast and crew of Broadchurch, expressing their thoughts on the beautiful locations they filmed in:
David Tennant, who played DI Alec Hardy commented “This is the only place you’d ever want to come on your holidays”.
Olivia Colman, who played DS Ellie Miller talked about Dorset’s beauty – “being on the cliff at Bridport in the sunshine during the first week of filming was just amazing. Idyllic”
Vicky McClure played journalist Karen White and describes one of her highlights of filming as “my week long stay in the caravan park where we filmed (Freshwater Beach Holiday Park). I didn’t have many scenes that week so had a lovely time by the sea”.
Filming on the Jurassic Coast was a real bonus for Pauline Quirke, who played Susan Wright, “I have absolutely fallen in love with the place. I loved being at West Bay and when I got the chance I’d go off exploring. I have been to Lyme Regis and lots of other places just having a wander around with Bailey (her pet Labrador).” “Even when the weather turned cold it was still beautiful.”
Broadchurch Series Two
As with the first series, the storyline was written by Chris Chibnall, who has lived in Bridport, Dorset, for over ten years.
The first episode of Series Two of Broadchurch, was screened in January 2015. David Tennant and Olivia Colman again star in the second series and are joined by Charlotte Rampling, who plays the role of a barrister (Jocelyn Knight Q.C.) in the Crown Prosecution Service. The part was written specifically for her. The eight episodes focus on the effect the trial of Joe Miller has on his wife, former DS Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman) and Danny Latimer’s family, when they attempt to achieve a normal life during the trial. Much of Series Two was shot on location in West Bay and other Jurassic Coast sites, as it was critical for the mood and tone of the stories.
Broadchurch Series Three
Chris Chibnall always intended Broadchurch to be a trilogy. The third and final series of eight episodes, began screening in the U.K. in February 2017. It was set three years after the events of Series Two. It follows the rape of a local Broadchurch woman (Trish Winterman). She is played by Julie Hesmondhalgh, who found fame as Hayley Cropper, Roy Cropper’s wife, in the long running soap opera, Coronation Street. Once again, the crime is solved by David Tennant and Olivia Colman. Sir Lenny Henry plays the owner of the local farm shop, where Trish, the victim, works.
What is the Broadchurch connection with Thomas Hardy?
Chris Chibnall, has lived in Bridport, Dorset, for over ten years. It is not a coincidence that Broadchurch exhibits a number of features found in the novels of the famous Dorset author, Thomas Hardy. The name Broadchurch, in the Hardy tradition, is a combination of two Dorset villages’ names – Broadoak and Whitchurch. The detective, played by David Tennant, has been given the name, DI Hardy, who is employed by Wessex Police Force. Wessex was the fictitious county created by Thomas Hardy in his novels.