Film news

In concert: residents enjoy a night out thanks to Legend filmmakers

24th October 2014
Tom Hardy as the Kray twins; respecting residents as filming takes place. Pic: PA
Tom Hardy as the Kray twins; respecting residents as filming takes place. Pic: PA

Tonight, residents around Trinity Church Square in Southwark will be treated to a classical concert in the Henry Wood Hall – thanks to a generous donation from the Legend filmmakers.

Tom Hardy plays both Kray twins in the film about their notorious lives during the 1950s and 60s. A donation was made over the summer as thanks to residents, for filming in the area.

Locals will attend the concert in the lovely Georgian Henry Wood Hall, in Trinity Church Square – a former church, now a rehearsal and recording space for two London orchestras.

Locals are used to filming, having hosted Lillie: The Story of Lillie Langtry; The Awakening, set in 1920; Whitechapel Series 2 set in the Victorian era; the film of Dickens’ Bleak House; The Singing Detective set in the 1930s; and Spooks, among others.

The Trinity Newington Residents Association works for residents across the beautiful Georgian Trinity Church Square, Merrick Square and neighbouring streets including Falmouth Road. The association was created to act as a conduit between residents and their landlords (most tenants rent from Trinity House) and to develop and encourage community spirit. It started 38 years ago and now has 300 members, representing about half the neighbourhood’s families.

Alison Walker has lived in the area for 20 years and has been representing residents on matters regarding local filming for 10 years.

In the summer, as Legend prepared to film locally, Ms Walker told us, “We have a very well established way of passing on residents’ views about filming to the council. Twenty years ago there was the sense that filming was uncontrolled and we weren’t being respected. There were lots of difficult night shoots and people got fed up – so they put the kaibosh on all filming for a while.

“Now that Southwark runs a proper film office, through FilmFixer, it’s possible to manage filming in a way that works for everyone.

“People quite enjoy filming if it’s managed properly – it’s always a bit thrilling to glance out the window and see a super star. Whether it’s Renée Zellweger as Bridget Jones or Rupert Penry-Jones in Whitechapel 2.

“It’s important to us as an association that we spend the donations from filmmakers on activities everyone can enjoy. Donations have been spent on improving the gardens in front of Henry Wood Hall. And we can offer community activities that are free to residents, for example, classical concerts in Henry Wood Hall. We also build up TNRA reserves so we are better placed to campaign on our members’ behalf and to support them in any disputes.

“The ability to control the impact of filming is really important. Our main worries are about noise and light, and filming at night is very difficult. We’ve got the lines of communication open so that we can manage this sort of thing. We can determine conditions and be confident those conditions will be enforced.

“We can be particularly accommodating of period filming because parking isn’t really problem in the squares. So moving cars and suspending bays doesn’t generally cause residents any problems there.”