In the year 2000 part of the TV mini-series “Band of Brothers” was filmed in the countryside between Ayot Saint Peter and Wheathampstead. The series was produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks (who had starred in the film “Saving Private Ryan” – this was supposed to be a sequel.)
The filming was based around the popular walking route known as “The Ayot Greenway” which follows the disused railway line from Ayot to Wheathampstead. The set designers made extremely realistic railway track from wood so that it looked as though the railway line had returned. Existing features such as Hunter’s Bridge were also used in the scenes, and for people who know the area these are recognisable in the film.
An enormous crew descended on the area, gaining access to the film sets via an entrance next to Sparrow Hall Cottages.
It seemed to the local residents as though much of the filming was done at night and for a few weeks it was like living in a war zone. Loud noises would wake people from their slumbers and huge explosions would light the night sky. An exciting time for us all!