The Background Of ‘Downton Abbey’ Highclere Castle And The Historical Advisor

Though Highclere Castle was a fixture in England before Downton Abbey premiered, and Highclere Castle should be around for years to come, what do fans really know about the estate and the history surrounding the period of time when Downton Abbey takes place? From the history of Highclere Castle to the onset historical advisor for Downton Abbey, there is a lot to learn, from the way the estate was used to to proper way to stand and be greeted by a family like the Crawleys.

According to the Inquisitr, the producers of Downton Abbey recently shared details of the character plans for the show. It was hard to imagine that it was possible to tie up all of the loose ends on the show, but Julian Fellowes and Gareth Neame managed to get the job done.

The Los Angeles Times spoke at length to Alastair Bruce, who served as the historical advisor to Downton Abbey for everything from manners to location. He believes that the major detail that modern actors need to learn is about posture.

“If only we could take one lesson out of this otherwise terrifyingly starched era and just stand up straight,” he said in an accent that would sound quite at home upstairs at Downton Abbey. “All men would be more handsome and all women more beautiful.”

For the run of the show, Alastair Bruce made sure each historical detail was executed perfectly. Julian Fellowes said that Bruce managed to making sure the general’s medals are in the right order, to picking up the right fork to eat a blancmange.”

The actors say that without Alastair Bruce, there was no way that Downton Abbey could be as believable. Bruce, known officially as Alastair Andrew Bernard Reibey Bruce of Crionaich, OBE, remarked on everything from the way the table was set to the speed at which Elizabeth McGovern as Lady Crawley, approached dinner guests.

The Vancouver Sun said that Highclere Castle was one of the main stars of Downton Abbey. Highclere Castle in England is considered one of the most glamorous players in the PBS series. The current real-life occupants of Highclere Castle are Lord and Lady Carnarvon, who give credit to Downton Abbey for raising the number of visitors to the castle each year.

“It’s given us an extraordinary marketing platform,” says Lady Fiona Carnarvon of Highclere Castle being the central location for the show.

Visitors can now come to Highclere Castle to tour the house and gardens on most days of the week. Lady Fiona Carnarvon is grateful to Julian Fellowes, creator of Downton Abbey, who wrote the series with Highclere Castle in mind. The series has given Highclere Castle international prominence, and is now recognizable on sight.

Lady Fiona Carnarvon claims she does not know how many rooms are in Highclere Castle, she guesses 200 to 300, and cannot say how many rooms in total were used for Downton Abbey. Lady Carnarvon says she is hoping that a Downton Abbey movie is a go, and Highclere Castle will be back on the small screen.

Do you have any interest in visiting the real Highclere Castle, the home of Downton Abbey?

[Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images]