A HISTORIC house in Chapel-en-le-Frith is the setting for a chilling new BBC drama which has its first airing this weekend.
The Secret of Crickley Hall, starring Suranne Jones, Tom Ellis and Donald Sumpter, is a three-part haunted house thriller based on the best-selling novel by James Herbert.
It tells the story of the Caleigh family who, following the mysterious disappearance of their son, move to Crickley Hall. But they soon discover all is not as it seems.
The drama was filmed earlier this year at the ‘secret’ location, with the picturesque Peak District landscape as its backdrop.
Screenwriter and director Joe Ahearne, who has previously worked on Doctor Who, said finding a suitable location had taken the best part of a year.
He explained: “It had to be in a landscape which could flood, be in the middle of nowhere, on top of an underground stream and, most crucially, had to be the kind of place a man might take his grieving wife and family to get away from it all.
“It couldn’t look like the Psycho house and yet had to have some air of menace about it. It also had to be filmed for 1943 and now.”
In the story, time shifts between the present day and 1943 when the house – the real identity of which the BBC say is one of the secrets of Crickley Hall – was used as an orphanage for children evacuated from the Blitz.
The Secret of Crickley Hall follows a long line of film and drama productions that have been shot in the Peak District and Derbyshire, including The Holding, Dead Man’s Shoes, Pride and Prejudice, The Duchess, The Other Boleyn Girl, Jane Eyre and The Wolfman.
More recently, filming has been taking place in Hayfield and Chapel-en-le-Frith for the six-part epic drama series The Village, written by BAFTA-winning writer Peter Moffat and starring Maxine Peake and John Simm, which will be broadcast in 2013.
l The Secret of Crickley Hall will be screened in three hour-long parts on BBC One on Sundays November 18, November 25 and December 2.