The first Harry Potter film is celebrating its 20th anniversary this week and the inhabitants of the dead end where the scenes were originally filmed are still feeling the effects all these years later.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was released in the UK on November 16, 2002 and 4 Privet Drive, the fictional Surrey home and the street Harry Potter lived on, was originally shot in a real house just across the border from Surrey to Bracknell, Berkshire.
The scenes from Privet Drive, which in the books are in the fiction Little Whinging in Surrey, have been moved to a set, built at Leavesden Studios, from the second film. But that didn’t stop fans from paying homage to the real street, Picket Post Close.
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Christine, who only gave her first name, has lived in the closure for the past few years and said: “We have sometimes, quite often in the summer, kids coming downstairs in their little Harry Potter outfits, which is very cool and I don’t mind at all.”
“These are foreign visitors who usually come during the day as a group. But we had a group of older people come down and then I think they went somewhere and had a coffee.”
Although she saw the original movie when it was released, it wasn’t obvious that she was moving to that exact street until she moved there.
She added: “They don’t usually stop for long, except for a group that has come down from one of the local factories.
“THey asked me if I would mind taking a pic of them all because a girl was leaving, who was in Harry Potter, and they wanted to give her that pic and they were going to frame it for her with the whole group of people. ‘between them outside the Harry Potter House. “
Another resident, who wished to remain anonymous, has lived there for over 30 years and, although she was on vacation during the filming, remembers seeing part of the set lying around.
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She said: “The owls were around and the dog was in the grass. After that it was still very trendy and I originally did a lot of interviews for TV crews like the Japanese. . “
The Harry Potter films, based on JK Rowling’s books, have become a worldwide phenomenon, but the original three-bedroom house sold in 2018 for £ 435,000, just below the asking price of £ 439,950. Zoopla states that it then went on sale a month later, but that listing was subsequently removed.
But it’s not just the fans who are still in love with the house.
One resident, who has lived there for over 10 years, said: “I’ve seen the Harry Potter cast from time to time. Just on motorcycles where they come for a few seconds and then leave.
“I saw Rupert Grint, who played Ron Weasley, once about eight years ago. He took off his helmet for a few seconds and then left.
With such a famous property on their way, how do all the hordes of Harry Potter enthusiasts act when they visit, in the eyes of residents?
One resident commented: “They behave pretty well, let’s put it that way. “
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