Eastenders film crews leave Keynsham
Albert Square was twinned with Keynsham this week, as Bath & North East Somerset Council helped one of Britain’s most popular TV drama serials film a key episode in the empty shopping arcade on Temple Street.
The filming for EastEnders involved a spectacular stunt in which a car swerves out of control and crashes through a shop window, causing a huge explosion and fire ball.
Keynsham became the chosen location after the BBC staged a nationwide hunt to find a suitable empty shopping arcade to film the scene.
Jenni Wagstaffe, of the council-run film Office, said: “The BBC needed an empty shopping arcade for two weeks in September, which coincided with the shops in Temple Street being vacated prior to demolition. The BBC was looking at a number of alternatives but the perfect timing, the look of the street, and the positive attitude they received from Bath & North East Somerset Council and local emergency services swung it for Keynsham.”
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The BBC has revealed that the scene involves two of the younger members of the Branning clan; Joey (played by David Witts) and Lauren (Jacqueline Jossa) as they end up trapped inside the car, trying desperately to escape. Joey’s father, Derek, (Jamie Foreman) is also involved in the scene.
The filming, which has involved a night-time road closure on a section of Temple Street and Rock Road, took months of planning by many different departments across Bath & North East Somerset Council – including Property Services, Highways, Parking, and Health and Safety – working closely together with the Police and emergency services.
Councillor Cherry Beath (Lib-Dem, Combe Down), Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development, said: “Bath & North East Somerset Council is very pleased to welcome and support this much loved television drama serial coming to Keynsham. Filming takes place over a fortnight, and involves many cast and crew and is a rather exciting project to be happening here.”
The BBC’s location team, together with the Council’s Film Office, have also liaised extensively with the local community in order to cause the least amount of inconvenience and disturbance to residents and businesses near-by. Richard Godfrey, their location manager, said he was delighted with the reception he’s received from everyone concerned.
He added: "I have been particularly impressed with the smooth way in which the filming has come together and the co-operation and help that we have received from Bath & North East Somerset Council and of course the Keynsham residents. The brief for this particular location was always going to be difficult to fulfil but I think Temple Street fits the bill admirably."
As for the outcome, the storyline is a closely-guarded secret and viewers will have to wait until the episode is screened in November to find out what happens next.