Welcome to make-believe world of television

SWAFFHAM people have been getting an insight into some of the early scenes in the new ITV1 drama series Kingdom, which is currently being filmed in the town.

Local writer and actor Stephen Fry, who stars as Norfolk solicitor Peter Kingdom in the series, has been a familiar face on Swaffham's streets during shooting of outdoor scenes for the first two to three episodes, to be screened in the spring.

And, as these pictures specially taken for the Lynn News by ITV picture editor Tracey Whitton show, he was joined on location in the town last Friday by fellow actors Tony Slattery, Karl Davies and Katrine De Candole.

Tony Slattery, who has appeared in English Harem and The Crying Game, stars as the cantankerous Sidney Snell, who is always seeking litigation.

Karl Davies, familiar to soap fans as Emmerdale heart-throb Robert Sugden, plays sharp trainee solicitor Lyle Anderson, who dreams of escaping the sleepy backwater of Market Shipborough, where the drama is set, to work in the city.

And Katrine De Candole, who was Bahushka in the ITV1 drama Between The Sheets and also had a role in Murphy's Law on BBC1, appears as Aeste, a client who Peter Kingdom is trying to help out.

About 70 people have been involved in filming the early scenes, which have been centred on Oakleigh House near Swaffham College, the Greyhound pub and the Buttercross, all in the Market Place.

Oakleigh House is the solicitor's home and office in the series, and the Greyhound gets re-named The Startled Duck pub for the drama's purposes.

The town's famous Pedlar sign, on the corner of the car park outside Oakleigh House, also makes an appearance – but with the name of Swaffham temporarily replaced by Market Shipborough.

Mr Fry's character will be seen driving around in a silver open-top Alvis sport car, which has been used in scenes outside the solicitor's office and around the Market Place over the past fortnight.

Filming is scheduled to continue around Oakleigh House today, after the crew visited Holkham beach for location shots on Wednesday.

Other places in Swaffham to be featured will include St Peter and St Paul's Church, the Methodist Church, the library, the police station and a local jewellery shop.