A BRIDPORT farm shop is playing a starring role in the final season of Broadchurch.
Washingpool Farm has been used to portray Flintcombe Farm Shop in the third series of Bridport native Chris Chibnall's award-winning drama. Viewers also saw Washingpool Farm partner Simon Holland appear in the first episode, alongside Lenny Henry.
The business was initially approached in January 2016 by the Broadchurch location manager and further meetings took place during the following couple of months. Filming took place last summer on two days in June, half a day in July and one day in August, filming until late into the night on all occasions.
Disruption for customers was kept to a minimum. The set dressing team made slight alterations to product layout and signage in the shop and the shop had to be renamed and all Washingpool branding removed and replaced.
Mr Holland said: “They were all great and seemed to enjoy the setting and filming at Washingpool.
"It was particularly interesting to watch the crew at work. The whole Washingpool team were excited about our involvement in the filming and it was a great experience for us all. “It was probably evident to our regular customers that something was going on, but we did our best to keep it under wraps.”
Mr Holland's sister, Bryony and shop assistant Stephanie were also used as extras during filming and are hoping to make the final cut.
Newcomer to the series Lenny Henry plays the part of Ed Burnett who runs the local Flintcombe Farm Shop. A quiet, solitary man who has been in Broadchurch for 12 years since the death of his wife, Burnett is a little stubborn and obdurate – a man more tolerated than liked.
Others to work at the farm shop include central character Trish Winterman, played by Julie Hesmondhalgh.
Julie said: “Well it was absolutely wonderful being down in Dorset. It's really beautiful and I had a period of time in the summer when I was down a lot and I had a little caravan on the beach. I used to walk over the cliffs to West Bay to work in the morning and in the middle of summer it was absolutely lovely. It doesn't get any better than that."
Trish’s best friend is Cath, played by Sarah Parish, who also works at the farm shop.
She said: “I am from Somerset so it is sort of my neck of the woods. We were filming near Bridport and Yeovil is about 15 miles from there.
"It was very nostalgic to be back around that area. I was filming two jobs at the same time.”