A Sneak Peek of “Privet Drive” at Leavesden Studios London

May 13, 2016

Posted by: Catherine

Fans, HP Cast, Movies, News, Shaw, Warner Bros., WB Shop

Earlier this week, Pottermore, other special guests and Harry Potter news outlets were invited to a sneak preview of the iconic Number Four Privet Drive set at Leavesden Studios. As Leaky reported at the time of the event, Fiona Shaw, who plays Aunt Petunia in the Harry Potter films, was in attendance, and opened the doors of her on-film house, leading guests in to tour the set.


Leaky was very fortunate to be on the ground for the event, represented by Gemma and Emily. The following report and photos were taken for Leaky, from Gemma and Emily as they describe their experience:

Number Four Privet Drive has opened its doors.

Visitors to the Harry Potter Studios Tour have previously been able to view Number Four Privet Drive from the outside but soon Harry Potter fans will have access to the inside of this iconic house!

Leaky was lucky enough to have a sneaky preview of what’s in store for future visitors on the evening of the 10th May. Myself (Emily) and Gemma were given this exciting opportunity to go to the event and tell you all about it!

Upon entering the Warner Bros studios, guests were greeted with glasses of prosecco and smoking cocktails. We were able to enjoy the experience of the studios, from the makeup used on set, (with some of my favourite details being the small handwritten notes from the cast on the mirror) to the actual costumes of the cast and magic brought to life in such forms as the magic knitting needles in the Weasley Kitchen!



We learnt wand choreography and got to try on cloaks (I’m Ravenclaw and Gemma decided to be Slytherin for the evening). I haven’t been since The Hogwarts Express was opened and it was Gemma’s first time at the studios. We both agreed that seeing and boarding the train is definitely a highlight. It is a spectacular sight and one that all Harry Potter fans should see! After all, we have all dreamed of getting our letter and boarding that magical train.


Once we had enjoyed exploring and developing our wizardry skills we arrived at the Back Lot café where we waited, enjoyed more canapés and drinks. We were also treated to Butter Beer ice cream and it was delicious!


The lights were set, spotlights circled the house and created suspense as we looked through the glass doors onto the red carpet that led to that famous front door. Can’t imagine the Dursley’s would have approved of such extravagance, the front of the house definitely looked more ready for a film premiere than the normal, perfectly ordinary existence of the Dursley family. However, only such was appropriate for one of the first openings inside this house!


Now, I’ve said that the Dursley’s may not have approved but the special guest we had been promised at the beginning of the evening turned out to be one of the inhabitants of No 4 Privet Drive, Aunt Petunia! Or, as she is known outside of the Harry Potter world, the actress Fiona Shaw. After reminiscing upon her fond memories of the house and filming the doors opened and we all followed her down the red carpet where the ribbon was cut and guests started to enter Number Four Privet Drive!


Walking through the entrance we were transported into the Dursley Home on that Sunday when conventional post may not have been delivering but of course that didn’t stop magical means of delivery. Looking into the living room the iconic letters were suspended everywhere and the little details of the living room really were incredible.


There was so much to look at that we could have stood there for hours admiring and taking it all in. One of the very informative tour guides was on hand to point out little details that otherwise could go overlooked such as the ‘Drill Trophy’ won by Vernon Dursley in his occupation as a drill salesman. The experience may be over relatively fast but the details are wonderful and definitely worth seeing and finding out more about!


The front door of Number Four Privet Drive is only open between the 27th May – 6th June, but we really hope that this will be extended because this is definitely going to be a popular addition to the tour.


We had a wonderful time and would like to thank The Leaky Cauldron for giving us the opportunity to go!


The Privet Drive set will be open to the public later this month! Thanks, Emily and Gemma!


The Leaky Cauldron is not associated with J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros., or any of the individuals or companies associated with producing and publishing Harry Potter books and films.