An afternoon at Filming Location ‘Voakes Manor’ | Film Locations

3 minute read

Table of contents:

  • Intro
  • The story of Voakes Manor
  • Types of shoots 
  • Potential for a crew

Have you ever stepped into a building and it instantly fills you with wonder and possibility? From interior inspiration to a filming location, stepping into Voakes Manor felt like stepping into a conceptual film set already. 

In this blog post, uncover the story of Voakes Manor and what led owners, Serena and James, to rent their house out as a film location.

Once Upon a Voakes Manor…

In the quiet countryside of Pulborough, just an hour’s train journey from London, Voakes Manor sits amongst acres of Vineyards. Upon arrival, the property is instantly breathtaking, and fully justifies the need for a recce in order to fully appreciate the space and its potential.

Voakes Manors’ owners, Serena and James, are kind and welcoming, and solidify the benefits of working with homeowners for a shoot – they are often just as excited about the content as the creator. And if you’re lucky on your next Film Locations shoot, you’ll end up with a host like James, who is a chef, and will happily provide catering for your crew!

After a chat about the history of the property, with notable moments including the fact that an, “extremely glamorous individual with a big beehive and horn-rimmed glasses”, lived there prior to the couple, it was time for a tour. 

Each room has its own feel, but together creates a cohesive and consistent interior style that would benefit large shoots capturing multiple images or videos across a few days. Serena describes her style as, “classically opulent with a modern twist”, and this perfectly reflects the interior. 


Voakes Manor dining room, with royal blue walls, a large brown dining table with blue chairs and a blue exotic bird wallpaper


Not only would potential crews have access to the main house for filming, but the property features an annexe that offers a completely unique environment to the main building. Coming up the stairs reveals glass windows, looking across the West Sussex countryside. The houses connect together and you are once again in the main section of the home. There are endless opportunities for filming, photography and any other type of shoot, and a recce would certainly help to plot out potential spots. 

A short walk through the gardens and you enter a secluded outdoor area with a fire pit, which is another short walk to a completely secret garden. Both are excellent filming locations for Summer content, but look captivating even in the Winter months. Exploring the grounds is a completely unique experience, combining the work that the couple has put into its restoration and original features which give the property so much character.

“We just want to make it as easy as possible [for the crew].

It’s what we do with anyone that’s here, whether it be one of our friends or someone from a business perspective.

We want them to be as comfortable as possible.”

And They Filmed Happily Ever After

For Voakes Manor, there truly are endless possibilities for film and photography productions. Whether you are a film producer, photographer or location scout, the entire space is available to hire as a location, including the separate annexe as previously mentioned.

A few of the types of shoots that are possible include:

  • High fashion editorial
  • Music video
  • Short film
  • Large productions
High Fashion Editorial

Often used in magazines or publications, high fashion editorial shots require a striking background to tell the story through visuals. 

Serena explains that their lounge is the perfect location for an editorial shoot, with ideal lighting and wallpaper that would stand out amongst any other shot. 


Music Video

What comes to mind when you think of a music video location? A long driveway to highlight swanky cars, or maybe a plunge pool or jacuzzi to capture that ever-popular slick back hair look? 

Voakes Manor is the gift that keeps on giving, with every element you would need to create the classic music video with a modern twist.


Voakes Manor's garden at sunset with plunge pool lit up by the orange and pink sky

Short Films or Large Productions

Whether you are creating a short film or a larger production, the space is ideal.

For a short film, creators can manipulate the illusion of multiple locations in one, with the outhouse creating a completely different environment and the exteriors providing even more juxtaposition.

Bigger productions or feature film shoots can take advantage of the ability to shoot and stay, capturing all the content needed over a short span of time before moving on to the next location. 


One of Voakes Manor's bedrooms, with blue and lilac alternating painted walls and soft furnishings

The After Credit Scene (aka, the practical information)

Voakes Manor offers an incredible opportunity for the crew, and the pair have gone into detail about the facilities that they have. 

“We’re open to crews staying here for the night. Obviously, there are a number of bedrooms that we have, so that would be [room for 15 people to stay]. We’ve got lots of outbuildings and lots of areas for [crews] to store [equipment]. 

Even to the point of catering – the recent enquiry that we had, we did make notes of the fact that if they wanted catering for that day, particularly if the crew were just here for a day, they can put an order in, I’m a cook and a chef as well. 

We can move over to the coach house and leave the house empty. In our master suite, we’ve got a large enough room which is a walk-in wardrobe, a great place if you’re doing a photoshoot, we have racks to hang clothes. We can wheel them in there, put all of the clothes for photoshoots in there. You can do makeup, all of that jazz, which then leaves the rooms clutter-free, so you’re not having to move stuff out of the way before you try and take a shot.” 

They have truly thought of every need of a crew, and are more than happy to accommodate any additional needs.


Enquire to speak to Serena and James directly.

Want to list your house for film locations like Voakes Manor? Start the onboarding process today. 

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Rosie Budd

Community Marketing Manager