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Sparkhouse : Locations

Sparkhouse was filmed on location in West Yorkshire.

Several scenes were set (and filmed) in Hebden Bridge - John Standring's house, the police station, the shops where Carol and Andrew meet after they've been forbidden to see each other, Dr Lawton's surgery, the toy shop Carol steals Christmas presents from, the chemist where Carol buys the tablets that she later tries to kill herself with (and where Lisa later finds Becky shopping), the cafe where Lisa and Becky have tea, Lisa's school, and the station.

The two farms, Sparkhouse and Whitegate Head, really do face each other across a valley, although they're closer to Todmorden than to Hebden Bridge. But the ruined farmhouse where Andrew and Carol meet is several miles away, on the moors above Hebden Bridge.

The shops in Halifax where Carol takes John for a 'make-over' in the third episode are in Westgate St, Halifax, near the Piece Hall. But the registry office scenes were actually filmed at Rochdale Town Hall over the border in Lancashire.

Other scenes were filmed further away from the Hebden Bridge area. The pub where Andrew, Carol and John go on Christmas Eve is the Carriage House, Standedge (except for the brief scene in the Gents, which was filmed at another - unknown - pub). The aerial shot tracking across the dark rainy moor at the beginning of episode 2 as Carol drives the Land Rover away from the pub was filmed on Saddleworth Moor. However, her destination was just off the road between Todmorden and Bacup, which is nowhere near Saddleworth Moor.

Many thanks to Jo and JJ of C19, who found most of these locations. The search for many of them took a lot of ingenuity, and the fact that JJ managed to track down the pylon is truly scary...

Below are pictures of many of the locations. The wider pictures on the left are screencaptures from Sparkhouse, while the narrower pictures on the right are photos of the real locations. Thanks to Jo and Millhand for the pictures of the pub.

(Please note that details of the locations that are private houses or on private land aren't given.)

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Hebden Bridge

John Standring's house  

The police station, where John asks for help in tracing Carol.


The shops, where Carol and Andrew meet after having been forbidden to see each other.


Dr Lawton's surgery


The toy shop, where Carol steals Christmas presents.


The chemist, where Carol buys the tablets that she later tries to kill herself with. Later, Lisa spots Becky shopping here and they go off to have tea together.


The cafe in Bridge Mill, where Lisa and Becky have tea.


Lisa's school, which overlooks the centre of the town. The picture below left shows the view of the school from the town, a view that doesn't appear in Sparkhouse.


The station, seen when Andrew's father collects him as he returns home from his first term at university. It's a lovely building, with most of the old signage still intact.


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The farms


The farmhouse was in a dilapidated state when Sparkhouse was filmed there in 2002. It has since been renovated and is now several separate appartments. The barn in the far end of the main building, with the arched entrance, is where John and Andrew started their fight. It's now glazed in and is part of the house. The run-down barn in the foreground has also been renovated and turned into an apartment.

The second pair of pictures shows the view of the rear of the farm from across the valley, where "Whitegate Head", the Lawton's house is.


Whitegate Head

This is the Lawtons' house.


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The ruined farmhouse

The ruined farmhouse where Andrew and Carol meet is on the moors above Hebden Bridge. It was actually three dwellings, inhabited by farmers who were also weavers, but it was abandoned in the mid-19th century. The coming of the mills with their power-looms meant that hand-loom weavers up on the hills could no longer make a living. Many of them moved down into the valleys to work in the new steam-powered mills.


Left: This aerial shot from the end credit sequence of episode 3 clearly shows the building split into three dwellings, with the remains of barns at each end. The central dwelling was used for the filming.


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The gents outfitters, where John bought his suit for the wedding. The ground floor is now a ladies clothes department, with the men's department upstairs.


The barbers, where John got his hair cut.


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Rochdale Town Hall stood in for the Halifax registry office. It's a beautiful neo-gothic building that was completed in 1871 and is well worth visiting to look at the interiors. The room where the wedding was filmed has a frieze around the top of the walls that shows the history of textile manufacture. The picture in the fifth row below depicts James Hargreaves, inventor of the spinning jenny, and Samuel Crompton, inventor of the spinning mule.


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'The Fleece'

The pub where Carol made her startling proposition to John on Christmas Eve was actually The Carriage House, Standedge.


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The Pylon

The less said about this scene, from John's point of view, the better...


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Sparkhouse : Introduction | Playing John Standring | Video clip | Pictures | Locations | Production details and DVDs
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