From joyful reunions to tearful farewells, the Old Wansford Station Building– a part of the Nene Valley Railway– has been a witness to the highs and lows of human drama since 1845. In late October 2008, the Jacobean style edifice stood silently by as cinematic emotions unfolded between actors Penelope Cruz and Daniel Day-Lewis when the two stars stepped into the shoes of film director Guido Contini and his secret love Carla for a scene from the upcoming musical Nine. As the director yelled “Action!,” the photogenic pair recited their dialogue as a heavy mist of steam– a combination of exhaling locomotives and movie magic– provided a dramatic backdrop for the actors before drifting out of shot toward nearby River Nene, a body of water which also flows near the cast’s accommodations while filming in the area– the Haycock Hotel, Herewood FM reports.
A portal to the past, the 48-room coaching inn is an apt choice for silver screen royalty. Over the passage of the years its history has become forever intertwined with such regal guests as Diana, Princess of Wales, a young Princess Victoria and Mary Queen of Scots, for whom the venue provided a final memory of hospitality as she travelled to her final destination in life, Fotheringhay Castle.