ITV has confirmed that the long awaited Christmas special of its worldwide hit drama ‘Victoria’, filmed in Yorkshire and produced by Mammoth Screen, will premiere this Christmas Day on ITV 1 at 9pm.
Viewers will be whisked away to a winter wonderland in the two hour festive special, ‘Comfort and Joy’, starring Jenna Coleman and Tom Hughes as the young Victoria and Albert.
Some of the key Yorkshire locations featured in series 1 and 2 will reappear, but this time cloaked in a blanket of wintry snow; Harewood House near Leeds features both in the Victorian kitchen and in the grounds, away from the usual areas the public see, for the perilous ice skating sequence that we glimpse in the trailer. Wentworth Woodhouse in South Yorkshire stands in for London streets; and a number of private buildings across Leeds’ Bramham Park estate come into play, as well as a section of its forest which features as ‘Rotten Row’. Church Fenton Yorkshire Studios, launched by Screen Yorkshire in 2015, hosts the lavish interiors of the central Buckingham Palace set.
Creator Daisy Goodwin has promised there will be plenty of love, but also “near death and really annoying relatives”.
She also teased that the “Christmas spirit will be stretched to the limit upstairs and downstairs”.
The episode finds the Queen in a melancholy mood, as the festive period takes her back to her lonely childhood spent at Kensington, but she finds a welcome distraction when she takes in an abandoned child.
Albert becomes obsessed with turning the palace into a perfect magical wonderland, and tensions rise as he invites some unwelcome house guests to join the celebrations.
Set in Christmas 1846, the episode also sees Victoria uncharacteristically melancholy as she prepares to tackle her first Christmas without her beloved Baroness Lehzen.
Below stairs, chef Francatelli and Skerrett are struggling to keep their forbidden romance a secret. The trailer also hints at disaster, as we see Victoria frantic, reaching desperately into a hole in the ice.