As Teddington is the birth place of Noël Coward, it has always had a pretty good showbiz pedigree. However, the area’s place in the cultural world is uncertain ever since the beloved Teddington Studios were closed down in 2014.
Whilst the large television studio on Broom Road will have been a familiar site for many of Teddington’s residents, its demolition in 2016 to make way for a 213-flat development will leave a gaping void for those who used to enjoy seeing the stars of film and TV making their way to these prestigious studios.
Most of us will remember Teddington Studios as being the place where a wide range of TV programmes and advertisements were produced.
From Studio 4 being a key site for the production of many CBeebies programmes, to the complex being used in 2013 to create an advert for Jackpotjoy who now run the popular online gaming website, InterCasino, it’s remarkable to think about the sheer range of media that came out of this legendary place.
And whilst there were plenty of other recent successes like Men Behaving Badly, Pop Idol, Birds of a Feather and Harry Hill’s TV Burp that were all produced within the expansive Studio 1 building, it’s Teddington Studios output further back in time that’s perhaps more remarkable.
Not only did comedy legends like Morecambe and Wise, Benny Hill, and Tommy Cooper spend plenty of time delivering hilarious entertainment in Teddington, but many light entertainment shows like Opportunity Knocks and This is Your Life were also filmed within these studios.
Teddington Studios also saw plenty of action in World War II when a V-2 attack in 1944 killed the studio manager who tried to film the German missile campaign. And when you consider that even old-school Hollywood icons like Errol Flynn were filmed at Teddington Studios, it shows just how important this place is in our nation’s cultural heritage.
Despite the very humble beginnings in the early 20th century when a stockbroker’s greenhouse was used as a fledgling film studio, it’s remarkable how Teddington Studios grew to be such a cornerstone of the UK’s film and television industry.
So whilst the 21st century will see these legendary studios turned into an apartment complex, we will always have some wonderful historic memories of how Teddington Studios was able to keep us entertained with everything from black and white movies, to iconic TV shows, and even a few online casino advertisements!