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Saturday May 18th 2024

Beau Brummell | 1954

The colourful MGM costume drama was filmed in England, with Stewart Granger as the famous dandy and Peter Ustinov as his ‘fat friend’, the Prince Regent, son of King George III (the monarch portrayed by Nigel Hawthorne in The Madness Of King George).

The portrayal of George III (Robert Morley) as totally barking made this an interesting choice for his descendants to watch as the Royal Film for 1954.

Locations include the Throne Room at Windsor Castle; a horseracing meet filmed at Newmarket, on the A11 between Cambridge and Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk; the Tenth Royal Hussars parade filmed in Brighton, East Sussex.

Not far from Windsor, many of the interiors filmed in Ockwells Manor, near Maidenhead, Berkshire. The 15th century manor house was built for Sir John Norreys, who served under both henry VI and Edward IV, in 1645 and reputedly has played host to Henry VIII (so where didn’t?), Margaret of Anjou, Henry VI, Edward IV, Oliver Cromwell and, of course, Elizabeth I (a gift to copywriters when that other queenly Liz supposedly lay down for a nap – “Liz sleeps in Good Queen Bess’ bed”). Ockwells, which is a private home and not open to the public, is also home to that famous torture device, the Maiden of Nurnburg, which actually appears in the movie.

Brummell’s real London residence (there’s a Blue Plaque to him) is 4 Chesterfield Street, off Curzon Street behind Piccadilly, W1, in London’s Mayfair.