Where Is Call The Midwife Filmed?

If you are captivated by the heartwarming tales from television series, you might be curious about where is Call the Midwife filmed.

The popular BBC period drama, set in the 1950s and 1960s London, brings to life the story of nursing midwives in the East End.

While the series does an excellent job in portraying the era, the filming doesn’t take place in the modern-day East End; instead, it utilizes various locations to recreate the historic ambiance.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent is a pivotal setting for the show, where it stands in for the streets and buildings of Poplar, the area in London that the show is predominantly set.

The dockyard’s cobbled streets and preserved buildings provide an authentic feel of the mid-20th century.

Additionally, some interior scenes are shot at Longcross Studios in Surrey, where sets for Nonnatus House and other interior locations are meticulously constructed to mirror the period’s aesthetic.

Where Is Call The Midwife Filmed?

“Call the Midwife” brings to life the streets of 1950s and 1960s East London, though the filming locations are spread across different areas to recreate this historic setting.

Nonnatus House Exterior

Nonnatus House, the heart of the series, is depicted using exteriors filmed at The Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent.

When you see the midwives bustling about, it’s here among the cobbled streets and historic buildings that the spirit of Poplar comes to life.


The Docklands area in London’s East End, critical to the series’ backdrop, is also predominantly filmed at The Historic Dockyard Chatham.

This location provides a faithful representation with its Victorian and Georgian architecture, which stands in for the show’s iconic period setting.

Historical Settings and Inspirations

When you explore the backdrop of “Call the Midwife,” you’re delving into a richly recreated world of London’s past.

The show masterfully transports you back to the East End of the 1950s and ’60s, celebrating the real-life stories of a community and its medical caretakers.

Chatham Dockyard

Chatham Dockyard stands in for the East End’s Poplar district where the series narrative unfolds. The site’s historical ambiance, with its cobbled streets and maritime architecture, convincingly mimics the era, letting you almost hear the clatter of nurses’ shoes hustling to their next appointment.

The Historic Dockyard

The Historic Dockyard Chatham does more than just provide a backdrop; it encapsulates the spirit of the time.

Here, the crew converts period-appropriate buildings and docks into compelling set pieces that represent where the original memoir’s events took place, making it a key component in bringing “Call the Midwife” to life.

Studio and Set Design

When you dive into the world of “Call the Midwife,” you’re stepping into meticulously crafted interiors and production designs that transport you to the East End of London in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Interior Sets

Longcross Studios in Surrey is the filming location for both the interior and exterior shots of “Call the Midwife.”

This studio provides the necessary space and controlled environment for intricate set designs.

Here, a manor house is transformed to serve as the interior of Nonnatus House, where much of the show’s action takes place.

Attention to historical accuracy is evident in every room, from the nuns’ living quarters to the busy maternity wards.

Production Design Details

The production design of “Call the Midwife” goes beyond mere set decoration; it captures the essence of the era.

The design details ensure authenticity, with period-appropriate props and furniture.

Each item on the set is carefully selected, right down to the wallpaper patterns and light fixtures, to ensure that they reflect the time period accurately and contribute to the storytelling.

This precision in design helps to fully immerse you in the atmosphere of the show.

Additional Locations

While the heart of “Call the Midwife” is set in Poplar, London, the show spreads its filming across various other locations that beautifully capture the essence of the era.

Countryside and Village Scenes

For the bucolic countryside and quintessential village scenes, the production often travels outside of London.

Kent provides a picturesque backdrop with its charming villages and rolling fields, often standing in for rural locales of the time period.

In fact, for specific episodes requiring that village feel, cast and crew might be spotted at locations like Chatham Dockyard’s adjoining areas or in other parts of Kent that offer a vintage British village aesthetic.

London Landmarks

Aside from the studio sets, “Call the Midwife” incorporates genuine London landmarks into its visual storytelling.

You’ll occasionally recognize historic sites and streets that are carefully selected to match the 1950s and 1960s period.

Landmarks such as The Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich serve as stand-ins for various London locales, transporting you to a time gone by with an authentic touch.

Public Access and Tours

If you’re a fan of Call the Midwife, you’re in luck! You can actually visit the historic filming locations at Chatham Historic Dockyard.

The site offers a special tour for fans of the series. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Guided Tours: Walk in the footsteps of your favorite characters like Sister Julienne and Nurse Trixie Franklin.
  • Costumed Guides: A guide, dressed as a character from the series, will lead your tour.
  • Exclusive Insights: Learn interesting facts about the filming process and hear anecdotes from behind the scenes.

Tour Availability:

  • Dates: Tours are available seasonally, often concluding on October 31st.
  • Tickets: Make sure to purchase your tickets in advance as these tours are popular and can sell out quickly.

Here’s a quick rundown of what you need to know:

LocationChatham Historic Dockyard
ExperienceGuided Tour with a costumed midwife
Main AttractionAccess to original ‘Poplar’ sets
SightsCobbled streets, buildings
AvailabilitySeasonal (check for specific dates)
Additional AccessAccess to the dockyard post-tour

Key Takeaways

  • Primary Filming Location: Most of the exterior scenes of Call the Midwife are shot at the Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent.
    • This maritime museum’s cobbled streets and period buildings serve as the backdrop for the East End of London.
  • Nonnatus House: The show’s Nonnatus House was originally filmed at St Joseph’s Missionary College in Mill Hill, North London.
    • Since 2013, the production has used a set at Longcross Studios to recreate the iconic Nonnatus House.
  • London Settings: Despite these primary locations, the series is set in the East End of London.
    • It draws a vivid picture of the area’s mid-20th-century atmosphere.
  • Book Inspiration: It’s based on Jennifer Worth’s memoirs.
    • Her experiences as a midwife in London’s East End guide the show’s narrative and setting.
  • Tours for Fans: Tours of the filming locations are available.
    • They bring you closer to the world of Nurse Trixie Franklin, Sister Julienne, and others.