More great news for fans of Midsomer Murders and the glorious South Oxfordshire area where it’s filmed, this week. To coincide with English Tourism Week 2016, the Mayor of Henley is launching a brand new walking tour of the town’s Midsomer Murders filming locations.
Regular readers will know that Henley-on-Thames is a popular location for filming the show, with such landmarks as The Argyll pub, the Court House and the Auction Rooms featuring in episodes like ‘Last Years Model’ and ‘The Black Book’.
The Mayor, Councillor Miss LM Hillier, is launching the tour on 8 March. It has been lovingly created by the Henley Hosts, a group of local enthusiasts keen to show off their town. They will be offering regular walking tours of 1 hour duration each Saturday at 11.00am from 12 March through to 15 October during 2016.
Not surprisingly, the tour has partly been launched to meet the growing demand of Midsomer Murders fans visiting the area to see their favourite locations. Coordinator Sarah Osbourne said: ‘Over the past two years I’ve been working with Henley Town Council and local businesses to increase the economic value of Henley’s Midsomer Murders connections. It all started with a self-guide printed trail, but with growing numbers of enquiries we felt that the personal touch of knowledgeable local people like Neil Ainsworth and Anthea Osborn-Jones would provide a more memorable visitor experience.’
It’s thought that around 15,000 Midsomer fans came to South Oxfordshire in 2015, and with 6.5 million people in the UK tuning in to watch episodes each week, this may well increase during 2016.
More visitors are also coming from overseas, where the show is extremely popular despite - or perhaps because of - it’s quintessential Englishness. In Sweden, for example, the show is watched by a massive 1.65 million viewers. That’s well over 15% of the entire country tuning in. It’s similarly top of the ratings in Denmark. So more and more pilgrims are travelling from far and wide to Henley and the surrounding area.
The tour starts off at The Argyll, where there’s chance to take a photo pulling a pint for Barnaby, and finishes off at the Market Place. If you’re a fan of the show and its locations, make sure this new walking tour is on your to-do list.