Upminster Tithe Barn used for film project

PUBLISHED: 13:45 25 January 2016 | UPDATED: 11:31 26 January 2016

Students from RADA in London shooting scenes for a project at the Tithe Barn in Upminster

Students from RADA in London shooting scenes for a project at the Tithe Barn in Upminster


It was lights, camera, action at a historic Upminster landmark when budding filmmakers from one of London’s top drama schools visited.

Upminster Tithe Barn, Hall Lane, was turned into a film set for the day on Thursday when students from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (Rada) shot scenes for a project.

A location manager from the school had chosen the barn as the perfect setting for a pre-war short film called The Final Frolic.

“It went very well,” said Andrew Skingley, a volunteer at the barn. “There were about 12 people there, eight students being taught about filming and how to manage a location for part of their degree course. It was very interesting, it takes so long.

“It was about three young lads who got their call up papers. One was desperate to lose his virginity so there was a bit of a romp in the hay.

“We have a wooden-wheeled wagon and we borrowed some straw from a farmer so they were rolling around in that.

Andrew said using the barn as a film location was an avenue that hadn’t thought of, but unfortunately Upminster residents shouldn’t expect to get a glimpse of Leonardo DiCaprio anytime soon.

“There’s a lot of health and safety aspects,” he said. “We will investigate it but I doubt we would be able to do it again.

“What we might start looking into is renting out props from the barn, we’ve got loads. If nay film companies need a 1920s kitchen...”

Ed Hicks, head of film, tv and radio at Rada, said it was an absolute joy to film at the barn.

“We challenge our students to find a period location, and this scene was set in a barn. They were able to jump on the tube and find one in Upminster. It’s gorgeous and exactly what we needed. The staff were so helpful.

Upminster Tithe Barn is currently closed for the winter season and will reopen on April 2.

Rada offers technical and dramatic courses. For more information visit

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