Of course Oakley Court should have its own page.
Instantly recognizable to most Rocky Horror fans, Oakley Court was used for most of the exterior and interior shots of Frank N Furter's castle. The lab and ballroom/theater were sets (though the ballroom set is based on one of Oakley's rooms, which is instantly recognizable).
The entrance is clearly the entrance to the castle, although the griffins' shields do not bear the Transylvanian lightning bolt. Presumably as the sightlines were better, however, Brad and Janet approached the castle from the back. There is no elevator (it was added for the production), although the mantelpiece and wraparound stairs can be admired, as can some of the rooms if they aren't occupied. The window Riff peered out of is in the Mugleston Suite, which at the time the author visited was the single most expensive room in the hotel (though at least one Rocky couple has honeymooned there). If you're wondering what was shot where, visit www.rockypedia.org/Portal:Music.
The castle itself was built in 1859 and since 1981 is a grand hotel, with website www.theoakleycourthotel.co.uk. The river Thames runs nearby on the grounds; the local stretch of it is called the Water Oakley. For more history, visit www.thamesweb.co.uk/windsor/windsorhistory/oakleycourt.htm
The castle is right next to Bray Studios, which moved there in 1955, and the castle itself was abandoned after 1965, so several of the classic Hammer Horror films were filmed there. The castle turns up periodically in other films / TV programs, notably making extensive appearances, inside and out, in the soft-core porn film, Vampyres (several alternate titles exist), featuring two lead actresses best known for being nude centerfolds as bisexual vampires.
Fan Club TimeWarp has since 2006 held an annual "Rocky Horror Picnic"; more information can be found at www.timewarp.org.uk/picnicshows.htm. TimeWarp notes "The TimeWarp picnic is the one time of year you can visit Oakley Court and walk around in your Rocky costumes all day without a problem." (The hotel even flies the Transylvanian flag for the occasion.) However as long as you're in a reasonably street legal costume, the staff appear to be very tolerant.
If you ever visit Oakley, we recommend taking tea (this used to be possible in the Time Warp room and still may be); it's breathtakingly expensive but something you'll remember forever. You can also order a "Rocky Horror" off their drinks menu, or simply wander about the grounds in astonishment.
- 1 The Au Pair Girls – 1972
- 2 Vampyres – 1974
- 3 The Wildcats of St. Trinian's – 1980
- 4 Pie in the Sky: S02E01 "Hard Cheese" – 1995
- 5 Murder Rooms: Mysteries of the Real Sherlock Holmes: S01E04 "The White Knight Stratagem" – 2001
- 6 A History of Horror with Mark Gatiss: S01E02 "Home Counties Horror" – 2010
The Au Pair Girls – 1972
IMDB – In this soft-core porn film four young women from Europe and Asia, recently arrived in England, begin their new jobs as Au Pairs, performing domestic chores in exchange for room and board and the opportunity to learn English. Predictably they each become more than friendly with their respective hosts. One woman, Nan, visits a family at Oakley Court and there are great interior and exterior shots during her scenes. In one particular scene Nan plays hide-and-seek with her host, running all over the castle's grounds. That scene begins at 33:05 and the film is currently available in its entirety on YouTube.
Vampyres – 1974
IMDB – From the very first to the very last shot Oakley Court is extensively featured in this soft-core porn film. A lesbian vampire couple pretend to hitchhike to abduct passersby in order to kill and feed on them to satisfy their insatiable thirst for blood. An innocent young couple parks their camper near the vampires' lair for a few nights and are drawn in by the womens' lust. The film is currently available in its entirety on YouTube.
The Wildcats of St. Trinian's – 1980
IMDB – The Wildcats of St. Trinian's is the fifth British comedy film set in the fictional St Trinian's School. It appears that Oakley Court was used minimally for some shots of the school, while other shots are from entirely different castles. The film is currently available in its entirety on YouTube.