Guide to Scottish Screen Locations Marks 130th anniversary of Scots TV Pioneer


As Scotland marks the 130th anniversary of the birth of the Scottish “pioneer of television”, the national tourism organisation has launched a guide aimed at set-jetting TV fans.

TV Set in Scotland, produced by VisitScotland, contains details of more than 60 television programmes, which have either been filmed in Scotland or have Scottish links.


Tobermory on the Isle of Mull, whose iconic colourful buildings were made famous in Balamory

The 36-page book is dedicated to inventor and engineer John Logie Baird who was born in Helensburgh on 13 August, 1888 and is considered one of the fathers of television and the first to show TV pictures to the world.

TV Set in Scotland will be available free of charge in attractions and VisitScotland iCentres throughout the country and for download at visitscotland.com from today (29 August 2018).

From milestone documentary, Night Mail, to Agatha Christie adaptation, Ordeal by Innocence, the guide delves into the animations, documentaries, dramas, sitcoms and soap operas which have been filmed in or inspired by Scotland over the past 80 years.

In keeping with the ‘TV guide’ format, it also has a selection of film highlights and contains special sections on Outlander, Doctor Who and famous Scottish small-screen characters, including Scrooge McDuck from DuckTales and Scotty from Star Trek.

Highlights include:

Victoria (Perthshire) - Starring Jenna Coleman (Doctor Who), ITV series Victoria focuses on the early years of the Queen’s reign, during which time she visited Highland Perthshire on a number of occasions. Filming took place at Blair Castle to tell the story of one of those visits, with two of the estate’s native Highland ponies used as Victoria and Prince Albert’s own ponies.

Taggart (Glasgow) - Fondly remembered for its catchphrase “There’s been a murder”, the UK’s longest-running TV crime drama filming took place across Glasgow with the original title card of the show using a panoramic shot taken from the summit of the Cathkin Braes to the south of the city. In later years, a shot of the city centre was taken from The Lighthouse – Scotland’s national centre for design and architecture – on Mitchell Lane.

Shetland (Shetland) - Taking its title from its archipelago setting, crime drama, Shetland, stars Douglas Henshall as Detective Inspector Jimmy Perez. Based on the books by Ann Cleeves, filming took place in various locations around the Isles, including Lerwick, the capital of Shetland, the Lodberries area and on Fair Isle (which lies 24 miles from the Shetland mainland).

Downton Abbey (Argyll) - The historical period drama television series, created by Julian Fellowes, depicts the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their domestic servants during the post-Edwardian era at their Yorkshire country house, Downton Abbey. For the 2012 Christmas special, the Crawley family head north to the fictional Duneagle Castle, filmed on location at Inveraray Castle.

Hamish Macbeth (Highlands) - Loosely based on the novels by M. C. Beaton, the series revolves around Constable Hamish Macbeth (Robert Carlyle), a local police officer of the fictitious town of Lochdubh on the west coast of Scotland, and his trusty fourlegged friend, Jock. Filming took place in the villages of Plockton and Kyle of Lochalsh and the surrounding area.

Two Thousand Acres of Sky (Dumfries and Galloway) - Set on the fictional island of Ronansay off the coast of the Isle of Skye, filming for this TV drama starring Michelle Collins actually took place in the seaside village of Port Logan, just north of the Mull of Galloway – the most southerly point in Scotland.

In a specially written foreword, Peter May, author and co-creator of Gaelic soap opera Machair, says Scotland’s “breath-taking scenery” makes it the “envy of the world”.

He writes: “Filmmakers and TV companies from far and wide make the annual pilgrimage to Scotland to fill their viewers’ screens with stunning images of snow-peaked mountains, silver beaches and turquoise seas. Scotland presents a unique landscape and culture for those film and TV companies as settings not only for documentaries, but for top-rated timeless dramas.”

For more on TV and film productions shot in Scotland and to download TV Set in Scotland go to: www.visitscotland.com/film

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