HOLKHAM HALL, home of the Coke family and the Earls of Leicester, was built between 1734 and 1764 by Thomas Coke, the first Earl of Leicester.
This Palladian style mansion reflects Thomas Coke’s appreciation of classical art developed during his six-year-long Grand Tour of Europe. By the time he returned to Norfolk in 1718, Thomas had bought many valuable and unique manuscripts and printed books, along with many great works of art and statuary.
During his time in Rome, Thomas had met briefly with Lord Burlington and his protégé, William Kent; and their enthusiasm and imagination led to the conception of Holkham Hall as you see it today.
Holkham Estate and beach are lovely places to visit, also the Estate is very popular with T.V and Film Industry a number of films and drama’s have been film within the House and the Beach, Kingdom with Stephen Fry who also lives in Norfolk was filmed on holkaham beach and Wells next the Sea others are BBC TV drama ‘The Lost Prince’. Various state rooms and the park featured in the C4 docudrama ‘Victoria’s Men’ televised in June 2008. While the Estate’s golden sandy beach, was trodden by actress Gwyneth Paltrow in the closing scenes of Miramax’s ‘Shakespeare in Love’.
David Jason and Maggie Smith dined in the great saloon for the First World War drama, ‘All The King’s Men’
In October 2007, filming for ‘The Duchess’, starring Keira Knightley and Ralph Fiennes, began here for two weeks after Holkham Hall was selected as one of the country houses used to recreate the interior of Devonshire House, the London residence of the Duke of Devonshire, a building which no longer exists. Later the same year, ‘the state rooms were again used for the comedy-drama film ‘My Talks with Dean Spanley’ staring Peter O’Toole. General release of both films went out in 2008.