The Country Houses of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice: Filming Locations
With several film and TV adaptations of Pride and Prejudice, you might be wondering about the real life Country Homes that served as filming locations.
In this article I’m focussing on both the 1995 TV mini-series, and the 2005 movie adaptations of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, and exploring the real life country homes that feature in them. From one England’s most spectacular Elizabethan Prodigy houses, to one of the most elegant country homes in the world, here are some of the real life filming locations from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.
Pride and Prejudice filming locations video.
In Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Pemberley is the fictional country estate of Fitzwilliam Darcy, and sits not far from the town of Lambton in Derbyshire. Described as a ‘large, handsome, stone building, standing well on rising ground’ we can assume that Pemberley was indeed intended to be a very grand country house.
It’s believed that Jane Austen largely based Pemberley on Chatsworth House in Derbyshire, and thus this serves as an appropriate filming location for Pemberley in the 2005 movie adaptation, starring Keira Knightly and Mathew Mcfadyen.
Likely one of the UK’s most recognisable Country Homes, Chatsworth House is a spectacularly grand mansion, and serves as the historic seat of the Dukes of Devonshire. Chatsworth is home to the Cavendish family, with the estate being purchased by William Cavendish and his formidable wife ‘Bess of Hardwick’ in 1549.
Very little of the original Elizabethan mansion exists today, with the house being completely remodelled by the 1st Duke of Devonshire in 1707, and later expanded by the 6th Duke.
Chatsworth is one of the finest and most extravagant Country Homes in the world, and is no stranger to the big screen. In fact Peaky Blinders, The Dutches and Death comes to Pemberley have all been partly filmed at Chatsworth, but the grand Palladian house is perhaps best known for its portrayal of Pemberley.
With Chatsworth serving as Pemberley’s exteriors, the spectacular Painted Hall and impressive sculpture gallery also serve as the backdrops to some of the interior scenes.
Complimenting Chatsworth beautifully as a filming location in the 2005 movie, some of Pemberley’s interior scenes were also shot at Wilton House.
Just a stones throw away from Salisbury in Wiltshire, Wilton has been the ancestral home of the Earls of Pembroke for nearly 500 years. There has been a house at Wilton since the dissolution of the monasteries, with the land being granted to William Herbert, 1st Earl of Pembroke by Henry VIII. Wilton occupies the site of an Anglo Saxon monastery, but the house we see today dates back 1647, having been rebuilt following a devastating fire.
Built in the popular Palladian style and from local stone, Wilton is particularly striking in appearance. Just as impressive though are the interiors, with the magnificent State Rooms being designed by Inigo Jones. Likely the most impressive of these indoor spaces is the Double Cube Room, with its unique styling and intricate gold leaf detailing.
This spectacular room serves as Mr Darcy’s Drawing Room in the Pride and Prejudice movie, and this is where Elizabeth Bennett is first introduced to Darcy’s sister, Georgianna.
Stourhead is one of the world’s finest 18th century Landscape gardens, and serves as one of the National Trust’s most popular properties.
Designed by Henry ‘The Magnificent’ Hoare after inheriting the family estate from his father Richard Hoare, Lord Mayor of London, Stourhead comprises a central man made lake, surrounded by magnificent classical temples, mystical grottos and rare and exotic trees.
These spectacular gardens are incredibly iconic, and serve as the filming location for one of the movie’s most iconic scenes. Here, the Palladian Bridge and Temple of Apollo provide the setting for Mr Darcy’s awkward, and rather soggy marriage proposal to Elizabeth.
Like Chatsworth, Lyme is particularly recognisable as the filming location for Mr Darcy’s home Pemberley, in the 1995 TV series.
Lyme is a glorious County House and Park nestled on the edge of the Peak District in Cheshire. Incredibly, prior to its acquisition by the National Trust in 1946, Lyme had been the home of the ancient Leigh family for over 550 years, with the current house being largely constructed by Piers Leigh vii in the mid 16th century.
The architecture of the house is particularly striking, with Lyme undergoing a huge transformation in 1725. What resulted, was the striking neoclassical architecture we see today, although there is much debate today wether this is more Baroque than Palladian. Either way, the magnificent south range is truly a work of beauty, and with its ginormous portico, gives Lyme its iconic look.
Lyme is also believed to have been some of the inspiration behind Jane Austen’s Pemberley, and features quite extensively in the TV series.
Photo by Rob Manrique.
Whilst Lyme Park is used in the TV series as Pemberley’s exterior, Sudbury Hall is the filming locationn for the interior scenes.
Situated in Derbyshire, Sudbury Hall is another National Trust property and also serves as the Museum of Children.
Built between 1660 and 1680 for George Vernon, Sudbury is considered one of the finest Restoration Mansions in England and beautifully encapsulates the spirit of the period.
The red brick appearance of Sudbury is quite striking, but the interiors is where the magic really happens. Not only renowned for its intricate plasterwork, Sudbury features one of the grandest and most spectacular staircases of any Country House, and the Long Gallery is another unforgettable indoor space.
Sudbury certainly fits the bill for Pemberley’s interiors, with the Red Room, Long Gallery and Staircase all featuring in the series.
Longhorn is the fictional country estate in Hertfordshire owned by Mr Bennett, and where he resides with his scheming wife and five daughters. With no males heir to inherit, the estate is bequeathed to Mr William Collins, Mr Bennett’s closest male heir. The Longbourn estate is said to bring in an annual income of £2000 per year, and whilst far less than Mr Darcy’s income of £10,000, is still quite a sum.
Possibly one of my favourite filming locations in the 2005 movie adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, Groombridge House in Tunbridge Wells stands in as the Bennett family home.
Far lovelier in real life than depicted in the movie, Groombridge House is not what we might call modest, but is in fact a picture perfect 17th century manor house, set within 300 acres of parkland and formal gardens. Groombridge is indeed very pleasing on the eye, more so due to the fact it features its own moat!
The house dates back to 1662, and was built by Sir Christopher Wren for his fellow architect and friend Phillip Packer. It truly is a wonderful manor house, and serves as a perfect domestic Bennett for the colourful Bennet family.
In the 1995 TV series, Luckington Court was chosen to depict the interiors of Longbourne. Luckington Court is a quintessentially English Manor House and was once rumored to have been eyed up as a family home by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex following their marriage in 2018.
The manor of Luckington has an extensive history, having been owned by King Harold prior to 1066. The current house however has its roots set in the 17th century and was largely remodelled in the 16th. Luckington Court comes complete with 156 acres of stunning gardens and parkland, and was actually on the market a few years back for just over £5m.
Situated in Kent, near Hunsford Parsonage, Rosings Park is the palatial estate of Mr Darcy’s aunt, Lady Catherine de Burgh. The daughter of an Earl, and widow of Sir Lewis de Burgh, Lady Catherine is a formidable woman, and we can imagine her house was intended to be quite extravagant. Whilst Pemberley is depicted as being elegant and refined, Rosings is depicted as over the top and a little ostentatious.
Perhaps one of the most extravagant Country Homes in England, Burghley House is a fitting setting for Lady Catherine’s over the top mansion. Situated just a stones throw away from Stamford in Lincolnshire, Burghley is one of finest examples of an Elizabethan Prodigy House in England, and also features some of the most spectacular 18th century interiors anywhere in the world.
With its construction spanning over 30 years, this spectacular home was built by Sir William Cecil, Queen Elizabeth i’s most trusted advisor and eventual Lord High Treasurer. Cecil was an exceptionally important figure, and having supported Elizabeth during the reign of Queen Mary, was richly rewarded for his loyalty.
No expense was sparred on Cecil’s magnificent house, with the palatial residence quite literally being fit for a queen. Sadly, due to an outbreak of smallpox, Queen Elizabeth was never to stay at Burghley, but she no doubt would have been impressed by the striking architecture and vast internal spaces.
Later generations of the Cecil family are responsible for the spectacular 18th century interiors, with the family still occupying the house to this day.
Of course, such a grand house is no stranger to the big screen, with numerous film and TV productions being filmed within the estate.
Keen viewers may recognise the mind blowing Hell’s staircase from the blockbuster hit ‘The Da Vinci Code’, and parts of the interior also stood in as Windsor Castle in Season 4 of Netlix’s The Crown.
Burghley is perhaps best known as the home of Mr Darcy’s aunt Lady Catherine de Bourgh in the 2005 movie adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, with the magnificent ‘Heaven Room’ serving as Lady Catherine’s extravagant Drawing Room.
Like Burghley House, Belton is perhaps best known as the residence of Lady Catherine de Bourgh, Mr Darcy’s formidable aunt. This time however, Belton takes centre stage in the BBC’s 1995 TV adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, featuring Colin Firth.
Belton is a beautiful Country Home situated just a stones throw away from Grantham in Lincolnshire. One of my personal favorite National Trust properties, Belton sits within stunning parkland and features delightful formal Italian and Dutch gardens. The house dates back to the latter part of the 17th century and was built for Sir John Brownlow.
The house and the surrounding estate is exceptionally grand and serves as a stunning setting for Rosings Park. Belton is considered one of the finest examples of Restoration architecture and is beautifully portrayed in the TV mini-series.
Belton serves as both the exterior and interior of Rosings Park.
The old Rectory at Teigh, in Rutland, serves as Mr Collins’s home, Hunsford Parsonage.
Netherfield Park serves as the temporary home of Mr Darcy’s friend Charles Bingley. Whilst Netherfield is not particularly well described in Austen’s novel, it is clearly intended to be a fairly grand Country House, featuring a ballroom, Drawing Room and an abundance of bedrooms.
With an annual income of around £5,000, we can assume Mr Bingley’s leased home would have been pretty grand.
Basildon Park House
Photo by Rob Manrique.
Basildon Park is a spectacularly grand National Trust Property, and stands as the filming location for Mr Bingley’s temporary home – Netherfield Hall, in the 2005 movie.
This grade I listed Palladian masterpiece was built between 1776 and 1783 for Sir Francis Sykes, to the designs of the celebrated architect of the time John Carr, and sits within 400 acres of historic parkland and gardens.
Having made an absolute fortune in India as part of the East India Company, Sykes invested much of his money in the construction of this colossal house. He would never see it finished however. Marred with allegations of corruption, Sykes died before the house was fully finished.
Basildon passed through successive owners until it was eventually requisitioned by the military in the first World War. So began a massive period of decline for Basildon (which was nearly dismantled and transported to America) until it was purchased in the 1950’s by Lord and Lady Lliffe and beautifully restored and gifted to the nation in 1978.
Basildon is a spectacular setting for Netherfield Park, and serves as the location for the grand ballroom scene.
Edgcote House is an 18th century country house in Southwest Northamptonshire. The current house was built between 1747 – 1752 for wealthy London merchant Richard Chauncy, but the estate is much older. Having previously been owned by none other than Anne of Cleves, Edgcote was also used as a military Headquarters by Charles I prior to the battle of Edgehill in 1642.
This delightful Georgian period house served as the filming location for the interior and exterior of Netherfield in the 1995 TV production of Pride and Prejudice, with the ballroom scenes being filmed at Brocket Hall in Welwyn Garden City.