Popping-in?

We designed our studio; it's filled with light and music. There are multiple meeting rooms, a well stocked kitchen, and an indoor garden (with fishpond). Pop-in for tea and stay to use a spare desk for as long as you need.

11 Greenwich Centre Business Park,
53 Norman Road, Greenwich
London SE10 9QF

Public transport

We’re next to Greenwich train and DLR station. We have a door right on the concourse but it’s different to our postal address.

From Greenwich rail platform

This video shows the route to take from the train that will arrive at Greenwich rail station from London Bridge.

From Greenwich DLR station

This video shows the route to take from the DLR that will arrive at Greenwich DLR station from Bank.

By car

If you have to come by car, we have a couple of parking spaces in front of our studio. Call ahead to make sure they’re free, and use our postcode (SE10 9QF) to guide you in.

Get in touch

We’d love to hear from you. Use whichever medium works best for you.

11 Greenwich Centre Business Park,
53 Norman Road, Greenwich
London SE10 9QF

New project enquiry

It's exciting to chat about potential new projects. We don't have a ‘sales’ team or a form to fill in. Call us or give us a little detail via email and we'll get straight back to you.

enquiry@cogdesign.com

Website support

If you're a client then you'll be best served by calling us or contacting us via Basecamp, otherwise you can use this dedicated email that reaches all of the digital team.

digital@cogdesign.com

Finance questions

This email hits the inboxes of the people who deal with our bookkeeping and finances.

accounts@cogdesign.com

Just want a chat?

Sometimes enquiries don't fall neatly under a heading, do they?

hello@cogdesign.com

Cultural Calendar

A round-up of recommendations and reviews, sent on the first Friday of each month, topped-off with a commissioned image from a talented new illustrator. Sign-up and tell your friends.

Sign me up Cultural Calendar

Cog News

An irregular update of activity from our studio. Showing off about great new projects, announcements, job opportunities, that sort of thing. Sign-up and tell your friends.

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The Making of Harry Potter: Studio Tour

The Making of Harry Potter: Studio Tour

With very little knowledge or interest in the story (I’ve not read any of the books and watched only a couple of the films), the Watford-based attraction was going to have to offer a lot to convince me of the relatively expensive price tag.

A World War II Aerodrome come Rolls-Royce engine factory, ‘Warner Brothers Leavesden’ began it’s new life as a film studio when the team behind James Bond came across the disused site in the mid-nineties. In desperate need of an alternative to the fully-booked Pinewood, the site was hastily transformed for the filming of ‘Goldenye’. By the start of the new millennium, the first Harry Potter film was in production there.

I can get a little carried-away at such attraction, and managed to spend five hours wandering amongst the exhibits
ross@cogdesign.com

Ten years (and eight Potter films) later, the Hollywood studio invested more than £100m in the site, and became the only one to own a permanent European base in the UK. But they didn’t just convert the eight existing stages in to state of the art facilities for future productions – they created two entirely new stages to house the iconic sets, props and costumes of ‘the most successful film series of all time’ as a permanent exhibition.

Half-hourly tours, of which I joined the third, are booked in advance and go some way to stagger the 5,000 visitors that can visit everyday. My first surprise, however, was to find that I wasn’t really on a tour at all. After a short video introduction from Potter, Weasley and Granger themselves, we entered the full-size set of the ‘great hall’ – an impressive sight, but after a few-minutes our guide disappeared and left us to roam as we wished for the rest of the day.

I saw this as a good thing, as upon leaving the great hall, I soon realised that the experience would be more than walking from ‘room’ to ‘room’ – beautiful models, and other production paraphernalia amongst the larger sets and props, I was able to get lost in the details of the process.

I can get a little carried-away at such attraction, and managed to spend five hours wandering amongst the exhibits – far more than the suggested three, but there wasn’t an aspect of the film-making process that failed to fascinate me. There are some obvious stand-out pieces, many at full-size; a huge animatronic creature that I now know to be a ‘hippogriff’; even the entire ‘Diagon Alley’, but there are so many prosthetics, costumes, drawings, videos and other things to explore.

A small green-screen area, was the only let-down for me. A large queue snaked around booths where you could ‘fly a broom over Hogwarts’ and buy the particularly tacky footage for £30 a pop – it felt at odds to the high-quality exhibits around it. I suspect it was the highlight for many visitors though, especially the younger members, so I should probably be a little more forgiving. It was saved slightly by footage of the actors themselves filming against a green screen too – another great behind the scenes insight.

A particular highlight for me was the scale models throughout the exhibition, especially the early stage ‘whites’ (as I now know them to be called), that are still constructed in incredible detail. A display of graphic design obviously caught my attention – newspapers, sweet-packets, labels, cereal boxes, book jackets, badges, certificates, hand-written letters, posters – all crafted to perfection.

The most successful film series of all time seems to have translated in to the most successful film-based exhibition of all time. A five-star review from me.