Where was Anatomy of a Scandal filmed? These are the various set locations

Anatomy of a Scandal has viewers gripped, but where was the hit drama filmed?

Michelle Dockery playing Michelle Woodcroft in scene from Anatomy of a Scandal
(Image credit: Netflix)

The Anatomy of a Scandal filming locations can be deceiving, with a variety of places used, from the famous Cuckmere Haven beach in Seaford, to John Rylands Library in Manchester. 

Based on the Anatomy of a Scandal book by Sarah Vaughan, who’s since gone on to write one of the best books of 2022, the new Netflix political drama documents the fallout following an affair between a British MP, James Whitehouse (played by Rupert Friend), and one of his researchers, Olivia Lytton (played by Naomi Scott), whose allocations of rape lead to a high-profile court case. 

The six-part series documents the case as it becomes public knowledge, whilst Sophie Whitehouse (played by Sienna Miller, who recently admitted she found playing the role like therapy), maintains her husband's innocence and desperately tries to protect her family from a scandal that could ruin them. With a major plot twist, the Anatomy of a Scandal ending has certainly left viewers hooked and in need of a second season. 

Where was Anatomy of a Scandal filmed? 

Anatomy of a Scandal cast filming on location in Surrey

(Image credit: Netflix)

With a star-studded cast and gripping storylines, it is no surprise that Anatomy of a Scandal has shot straight into the top 10 on Netflix worldwide, but the beautiful locations used to portray the story also act as a visual delight for viewers. 

As expected, studio sets were used to recreate iconic locations, with Anatomy of a Scandal using the famous Shepperton Studios in Surrey, according to Netflix Life. But other scenes, such as the flashbacks to Oxford University and The House of Commons, used real locations, but not always the ones they're depicting. 

London

Palace of Westminster Scene from Anatomy of a Scandal

(Image credit: Netflix)

It makes sense that as most of the plot unfolds in the UK's capital, that much of the filming took place in London at a few key locations. 

The Delaunay

Michelin-listed restaurant The Delaunay is located in London's Covent Garden and is used as the location for a rendezvous between Kate Woodcroft, the lead criminal barrister working on the case, played by Downton Abby star Michelle Dockery, and her lover. 

The Delaunay exterior in Covent Garden, London

(Image credit: The Delaunay )

Terrace Bar

Located in the House of Lords, the exclusive Terrace Bar is a prominent location within the political drama. known as a difficult bar to frequent, unless you are rubbing shoulders with a Member of Parliament, this location is used by James and his mistress for drinks, prior to the beginning of the affair. 

Palace of Westminster

As you would expect for a member of Parliament, there are several shots filmed around Central London across the series, one key location being James' office which is in the Palace of Westminster. Located on the River Thames, with over a thousand rooms and approximately 1,000 staircases, the neo-Gothic four-story building is where Parliament meet and decides on policies for the UK.

Freemasons Hall

Some of the most impressive scenes in the Netflix show are shot in the courtroom, depicted as the Old Bailey. These scenes were actually mostly shot onset in Shepperton Studios, with some shot on location at Freemasons Hall in London.

Oxford

young James Whitehouse played by Ben Radcliffe in scene from Anatomy of a Scandal

(Image credit: Netflix)

Areas in and around Oxford, located in central southern England and home to the prestigious Oxford University, were used throughout the series, with James being a student at the University in his younger years. The campus scenes, however, were not shot on location, with the producers opting to shoot these at Winchester College in Hampshire. 

Despite this, several historic locations in Oxford are used in the series, such as New College Lane, named after New College, one of the older Oxford colleges, and Radcliffe Square, a cobbled square that is surrounded by the historic college buildings and arguably some of the UK's most beautiful gardens, such as the Oxford Botanic Garden. 

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Journalist Tamsin Shelton spotted the filming in Oxford happening first hand, tweeting, "No stars spotted but lots of activity for @netflix filming of #anatomyofascandal by @SVaughanAuthor @simonschusterUK around Radcliffe Square in the heart of Oxford last night. Pix of exterior of Wadham, Brasenose Lane and New College Lane."

The Sussex Coast

James Whitehouse played by Rupert Friend and Sophie Whitehouse played by Sienna Miller in a scene from Anatomy of a Scandal

(Image credit: Netflix)

Cuckmere Haven, a filming spot that has featured in several other film and TV shows including Atonement and Luther, is a beautiful UK staycation location that served as the backdrop for some of the flashback scenes. 

In these scenes, we witness the Whitehouse family decamp from London for some downtime on the Sussex coast. 

Manchester

John Rylands Library interior, used for filming Anatomy of a Scandal

(Image credit: Getty Images)

John Rylands Library is a late-Victorian building on Deansgate in Manchester, that serves as part of the University and is used to recreate scenes depicting the inside of The House of Commons, with many of the building's fixtures and fittings lending themselves to the grandeur being portrayed.

Hampshire

Winchester College founded in 1382 in Winchester England is one of the first and best known public school in England and became the model for Eton and Kings College

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Acting as a backdrop for the scenes that depict James' time at Oxford University, these shots of young James, Sophie, and Holly were actually filmed at Winchester College. 

Founded in 1382, Winchester College is a boarding school located in Hampshire, England, and became the model for Eton and Kings College, regarded as one of the most prestigious schools in the world.

Lauren is the former Deputy Digital Editor at woman&home and became a journalist mainly because she enjoys being nosy. With a background in features journalism, Lauren worked on the woman&home brand for four years before going freelance. Before woman&home Lauren worked across a variety of women's lifestyle titles, including GoodTo, Woman's Own, and Woman magazine.