BBC crews spotted filming new drama Summer of Rockets in Benington and Watton-at-Stone

PUBLISHED: 18:16 02 July 2018

BBC crews have been spotted filming six-part series Summer of Rockets in various Hertfordshire locations. Picture: David Stuckey.

BBC crews have been spotted filming six-part series Summer of Rockets in various Hertfordshire locations. Picture: David Stuckey.


BBC crews have been seen filming a new drama in the area.

Actor Keeley Hawes. Picture courtesy of the BBC.Actor Keeley Hawes. Picture courtesy of the BBC.

Eagle-eyed Stevenage resident David Stuckey spotted the BBC crews filming at Benington Lordship and at a house near Watton-at-Stone.

He said: “Film crews have been filming in our locality for the past few weeks, mainly on country estates and large manor houses.”

It’s for Summer of Rockets - a semi-autobiographical six-part series for BBC Two - which is set in the UK during the Cold War period and tumultuous year of 1958.

Samuel, played by Toby Stephens (Lost In Space, Die Another Day, Black Sails), is a 40-something Russian Jewish émigré, inventor and designer of bespoke hearing aids, whose clients include former Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill. The series follows Samuel and his family as he is approached by MI5 and tasked with a secret mission.

Actor Toby Stephens. Picture courtesy of the BBC.Actor Toby Stephens. Picture courtesy of the BBC.

He must obtain information about his charming, newly-acquired friends Kathleen, played by Keeley Hawes (Line Of Duty, Bodyguard), and her husband Richard Shaw MP, played by Linus Roache (Vikings, Homeland), through whom Samuel also meets the impressive Lord Arthur Wallington, played by Timothy Spall (Mr Turner, The Street).

As Samuel’s life becomes more and more intertwined with his mission, how far is he willing to let things unravel for his cause? And who can he truly trust?

Toby said: “It’s good to be filming something back home in the UK for the BBC. It’s been a while.”

Keeley said: “I’m delighted to be part of such a wonderful cast, and can’t wait to spend the summer with them all.”

Timothy said: “The scripts are wonderful, the story is completely original and totally compelling and surprising, as is the gallery of fascinating characters.”

Set against the backdrop of Britain testing its first hydrogen bomb, and the Soviets launching their first ballistic missile and beating the Americans by successfully sending a satellite into space, the series written and directed by the multi-award-winning Stephen Poliakoff will offer a personal insight into this unforgettable time in British history.

Executive producer Helen Flint said: “This piece is hinged at the pivotal point of world history where the past and future are pulling in equal strength, and human beings have little control over the eventual outcome.”

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