Tommy Shelby and his criminal gang, the Peaky Blinders, have been entertaining us with their dubious dealings for almost a decade now. Set in Birmingham between the wars, the show’s dark, industrial backdrop and classy tailoring are almost as distinctive as the characters themselves.
Peaky Blinders has certainly left some wonderful scenes etched in our memories. But, far from the mean streets of Birmingham, they’re really filmed in locations across the country…
Few of the show’s real-life locations are actually in the West Midlands. But the Black Country Living Museum in Dudley is one exception. The museum’s period buildings and streets have appeared in seasons one to six. If you visit the museum, you’re bound to recognise the canal bridge and forge from the show’s exterior scenes.
Arley Hall first makes an appearance as Tommy’s family home in season three. The interior of this Cheshire stately home was dressed with paintings created especially for the show. The house has appeared in many scenes, including on Tommy’s wedding day and in a showdown with rival Alfie. And you may have spotted Arley Hall in other television shows like Coronation Street and Our Zoo.
Port Sunlight in Merseyside was originally built for the workers of the Sunlight soap factory. Thanks to its preservation, it not only makes a great day out but it’s also where you’ll find Polly Gray’s house. Although she’s meant to live in Sutton Coldfield, it’s actually one of the village houses that’s used.
The Grade I listed Hoghton Tower is a well-known Preston landmark but, for Peaky Blinders, it becomes St Hilda’s Orphanage in Birmingham. You’ll see Tommy and Polly driving up to this magnificent manor house in the opening scenes of episode three in season five.
Known as Manchester’s Water Palace, the ornate interior of Victoria Baths appeared in season two of Peaky Blinders. It provided the background for the horse fair scenes. Recently saved from closure, the Edwardian building now hosts events and has appeared in other shows including Cold Feet.
The show’s station scenes were filmed at Yorkshire’s Keighley and Worth Valley Railway. This popular heritage attraction has appeared in episodes throughout the six seasons. It’s where Freddie proposes to Ada and where the season one finale with Grace and Inspector Campbell takes place.
The traditional terraced streets in this part of Liverpool have often appeared in the show. Along with the neighbouring Powis Street, it doubles as Tommy’s Small Heath territory in Birmingham. However, Admiral Grove is probably more famous for being the childhood home of Beatles’ drummer Ringo Starr.
In season four, episode two, you may have noticed a colliery looming large in the background of scenes with Tommy and his gang. This is the Lancashire Mining Museum in Astley Green. If you visit the museum, you can see the actual headgear shown in the episode, but don’t expect to see the smoking chimneys as they were added afterwards using computer-generated imaging.