Night of the Demon, 1957

Director

Cast

visit the film locations

Hertfordshire: Brocket Hall, conference centre and golf club, near Welwyn Garden City

London: Flights: Heathrow Airport; Gatwick Airport

Visit: The British Museum, Great Russell Street, WC1.

Wiltshire:

Visit: Stonehenge.


Trivia

Scenes for Lady Caroline Lamb, the only film directed by playwright and screenwriter Robert Bolt (A Man for All Seasons, Lawrence of Arabia) were filmed at Brocket Hall. Lover of the poet Lord Byron, the rather flamboyant Lady Caroline – she once had herself served nude from a soup tureen at the Hall – retired here for the last years of her life.

The ‘Nelwyn Valley’ village for Ron Howard’s Willow was built on the grounds of the Hall. The estate also became the site of the duel in Highlander.

Night of the Demon filming location: Brocket Hall, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire

Night of the Demon filming location: 'Lufford Hall, Warwickshire': Brocket Hall, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire

Brilliant and genuinely scary filming of MR James classic horror story Casting the Runes, slightly let down by the studio’s insistence on giving the ambiguous demon thumping great close-ups at the beginning of the movie.

The opening scenes are at Stonehenge on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire.

Demon raiser Dr Karswell (Niall MacGinnis) follows John Holden (Dana Andrews) to the huge old circular Reading Room of the British Museum, where the paper containing the fatal curse (the ‘runes’ of the book’s original title) are handed over. The books have since been moved to the purpose built British Library, but the famous British Museum Reading Room itself has been restored as an exhibition space.

Karswell’s mansion, ‘Lufford Hall’, supposedly in ‘Warwickshire’, is Brocket Hall just west of Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire. The mansion, also seen in TV movie Murder With Mirrors, the 1991 remake of A Kiss Before Dying and Highlander, was home to the disgraced Lord Brocket, jailed for an insurance fraud.

It’s now a conference, dining and golf centre. You can see it from the public footpath running east from Marford Road, almost opposite the Crooked Chimney public house.

The demon finally materialises on the railway line at Bricket Wood, between St Albans and Watford, Hertfordshire.




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