28 Apr Essex Serpent Set to Show off county: Visit Essex
Viewers are set to fall in love with the Essex coastline as the much-anticipated limited series ‘The Essex Serpent’ airs on Apple TV on 13th May. The series is based on the bestselling novel of the same name, written by Essex-born author Sarah Perry, and stars Hollywood A-listers, Tom Hiddleston and Claire Danes.
The story follows Cora Seaborne (Claire Danes), a widow who arrives in Colchester, Essex, where rumours abound of a mythical serpent roaming the marshes near the River Blackwater. When convinced to visit the fictional coastal parish of Aldwinter, she meets the vicar, William Ransome (Tom Hiddleston), who is as suspicious of the rumours as Cora. Together they set out to find the beast, and along the way, find themselves entangled in an intense relationship.
Although much of the story is set in fictional Aldwinter, the series was shot in many striking locations that line the Essex coast. The calm backwaters of Alresford Creek provided the perfect backdrop for the fictional parish of Aldwinter. Whereas the picturesque nature reserve at Cudmore Grove on Mersea Island, managed by Explore Essex, gave a dramatic setting for Danes and Hiddleston to be filmed along the cliff edge.
The quaint market town of Maldon, famous for its sea salt, historic high street buildings and Promenade Park was a centre for much of the action. The High Street and famous Blue Boar Hotel and historic Moot Hall were all used in the filming and the town’s historic quay was transformed into a bustling harbour, bedecked by the magnificent Thames sailing barges, which still flank the riverside.
The stars were also filmed alongside the wide-open landscapes of Tollesbury marshes, which offered a unique beauty and eerie appeal. While the open water and wetlands of Abberton Reservoir, provided another setting for the mini-series, yet again showcasing the wild habitats that thrive along the Essex coastline. ‘The Essex Serpent’ was also filmed on Yacht Haven Island in the River Crouch and alongside the nearby shores of North Fambridge, a village with a strong sailing and maritime history.
Councillor Mark Durham, Chairman, Visit Essex, said: “We’re delighted that Apple TV chose Essex for the backdrop of this much anticipated mini-series. The Essex coast and estuaries offer a truly stunning landscape, which we’re sure viewers will fall in love with. From the charming landscape of the River Blackwater and Colne estuaries to the historic market town of Maldon, Essex has so much to offer.”
Spot the spectacular Essex coast on the small screen by streaming the first two episodes of the limited series, which premiere on Apple TV on Friday 13th May 2022. Subscription required.