The British have invaded again, but this time it's through our televisions. The hit drama Downton Abbey has taken the world by storm, and 10Best is taking you to Yorkshire, the setting for all the Downton antics. Highclere Castle served as the exterior filming location for much of the series and has become somewhat of a symbol for the show.
While Downton is a fictional town, it's set in the very real Yorkshire County in Northern England. Very little of the series was actually filmed in Yorkshire, but many of its towns -- Leeds, Richmond, Ripon, Middlesbrough and Thirsk -- are all mentioned by characters in the show.
In Season 2 of Downton Abbey, Mary and Sir Richard Carlisle plan to marry and move into lavish Haxby Park. The exteriors for Haxby Park were filmed at Waddesdon Manor in Buckinghamshire, a French château long owned by the Rothschild family.
Throughout the series, many a character has to make a quick trip to London from time to time, and when they do, you'll see them departing from Horsted Keynes Station, aka Downton Railway Station. The station sits at one end of the Bluebell Railway in a small town in Sussex.
Season 2's biggest scandal occurred when Lady Sybil decided to marry Tom Branson, the family's Irish Catholic chauffeur. Tom gets a job as a journalist in Dublin, Ireland, and he takes Lady Sybil with him. Scenes from their time in Dublin are never depicted in the show.
Mr. Bates, the former valet of Lord Grantham and husband to Lady Mary's maid Anna, was in hot water at the end of Season 2. He'd been imprisoned for the murder of his late wife, and many of his prison scenes were filmed in the old Lincoln Castle Prison in Sussex.
You may not recognize the outside of West Wycombe Park, but the interiors should look very familiar to any fan of Downton Abbey. Many of the interior shots of Downton and Mrs. Crawley's house were filmed in the town of Wycombe End.
Lord Grantham holds himself responsible for the people of Downton Village, and many of the village scenes took place in Bampton of Oxfordshire. The Bampton Library was used for exterior shots of the Downton hospital, and Lady Edith and Matthew visited the Bampton Church during a Season 1 episode.
At the beginning of Season 3, Downton was in trouble after a bad investment decision. The family picnics at Downton Place (filmed at Greys Court in Oxfordshire), where they might have been forced to move -- heaven forbid!-- if they didn't come across some big bucks quickly.
The Season 3 Christmas episode takes place in part at Duneagle Castle in the Scottish Highlands, the family's annual vacation spot. The actual castle depicted in the episode is Inveraray Castle, located in Argyll, Scotland.
During the Season 4 Christmas Special, Carson treats the staff of Downton Abbey to a day at the beach, after more than a little encouragement from Mrs. Hughes. The beach scenes were filmed in West Wittering in Sussex.