Sleepy Porthcawl left awestruck as Doctor Who film crew descend for week-long shoot.
The residents of Porthcawl were shocked to discover that series eight of Doctor Who was being filmed on location in the usually dormant seaside town last week. The new Doctor, played by Peter Capaldi, as well as his loyal sidekick Clara Oswald, played by Jenna Coleman, were filming scenes outside the Rest Home in Rest Bay, with the production crew, along with their monstrous trailers setting up camp on the common.
The invasion came as a surprise to many of the residents who had not heard anything about the filming taking place. One local enthusiastically exclaimed, “I was only walking my dog down Rest Bay like I always do and I saw loads of lorries and caravans on the common. I went over for a nose and I saw the Tardis… I was stunned!”
The news that the Doctor was in town quickly spread around, and soon the Doctor and his co-stars had an audience of fans and curious onlookers every day. The fans got to catch a glimpse of the iconic Tardis, which was on location all week, as well as extraordinary monster and alien costumes and smoke machines and lighting, brought in to create the perfect eerie atmosphere. Many of the fans watched in awe as compelling scenes were filmed across the week. Among them was Layla John a twelve year old self-proclaimed Doctor Who super-fan. She exclaimed, “I can’t believe Doctor Who is being filmed in my town…I’m lucky it’s half term so I can come down here and watch every day”. Layla was also so ecstatic to get her idols’ autographs, as between shoots Capaldi, Coleman and other cast members kindly went to greet the crowds of bystanders.
The filming took place from Monday to Friday last week, with Capaldi and Coleman on set for long hours every day. When asked if he liked filming in Porthcawl, Capaldi confessed, “It’s really chilly here…gives great location shots though”. This may be true as this is not the only piece of media to be filmed in the coastal town. One Chance, the critically acclaimed film about the Britain’s got Talent winner Paul Potts was partially shot on the blustery beaches of Porthcawl in October 2012.
There isn’t much surprise that Doctor Who was being filmed on the spectacular coast of Porthcawl as it is just 25 miles away from the home of everything Doctor Who, Cardiff. BBC Cymru Wales, which is based in Cardiff Bay, has been producing Doctor Who since its revival in 2005 and they film on location all around Wales. Cardiff Bay is also home to the Doctor Who Experience which opened in July 2012 and sees hundreds of fans pass through its doors every day.