Wales Film & Photography Production Services & Camera Crews
Are you a media company, brand, ad agency or production company looking for film / photography production support or shooting crew in Wales? Contact us for trusted fixers, producers, directors, DoPs, videographers, photographers, and full shooting crews tailored for the specific needs of your project.
Filming in Wales
For an introduction to shooting in Wales see below notes on film locations, permits, when to shoot, unique local stories, costs, tax incentives, crews, talent, equipment, communications, art department, studios, post facilities, visas and work permits for filming, transport, film-friendly accommodation, and safety advice.
Wales Film Locations
Wales in best known for its hundreds of castles, rugged coastline, scenic lighthouses, mountainous national parks, sheep roaming rolling green pastures, sleepy rural towns nestled in deep valleys, and road signs with hard-to-pronounce names. The distinctive Welsh language and Celtic culture colour the landscape.
Wales has hosted productions including The Dark Knight Rises, Highlander, Robin Hood, and the BBC fantasy drama, Merlin. Wales is a favourite destination for TV commercials looking for beautiful rugged landscapes.
Film locations can be divided into the following geographic regions:
Northwest Wales is best known for the otherworldly lakes and craggy peaks of Snowdonia National Park. Snowdon Mountain Railway climbs to the summit of Wales’s highest mountain, Mount Snowdon.
The impressive castles and fortified towns of Caernarfon and Conwy are located in this region. Penrhyn Castle is a Norman castle in this region.
Plas Newydd House and Gardens sit on the banks of the Menai Strait, in Anglesey.
The Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod is a music festival which takes place every year in July.
Wrexham is known for Erddig Hall and Pontcysyllte Aqueduct.
Ffordd Pen Llech in the town of Harlech is the world’s steepest street.
Dominated by the Cambrian Mountains, it is a sparsely populated area, consisting largely of green rolling hills, gorges, steep valleys with ancient native Welsh oak forest, and narrow country roads.
Aberystwyth is a university town and the largest town in Mid Wales.
Gregynog is a large country mansion in the village of Tregynon.
Powis Castle and Garden is another film location of note in this region.
Cardiff is the capital and largest city. It is the main film production centre where crew and equipment are based. Cardiff is a cosmopolitan city offering a variety of looks. Locations of note include Cardiff Castle, Millennium Stadium, National Museum, Pierhead Building, and Cardiff Bay.
Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is known for its spectacular coastline. Porthgain is a picturesque fishing village in this area.
The National Botanic Garden of Wales has an impressive single-span glasshouse.
Brecon Beacons National Park is known for its rugged hills and wild moors.
Merthyr Tydfil is known for Cefn Coed Viaduct and Cyfarthfa Castle.
Other castles of note in this region include Hensol Castle, Dyffryn Gardens, Caerphilly Castle, and Carreg Cennen Castle ruins.
Wales Film Location Permits
Permitting is a straight forward process. Please contact us for location specific information.
When To Shoot?
Wales has cold, dark and rainy winters (November to March) with occasional snow at higher elevations. Spring (April to May) has unpredictable weather. Summer (June to August) has warm conditions, particularly in coastal areas. This is the best time to film for weather. Fall (September to October) also has unpredictable weather. For monthly weather statistics please see here.
The National Eisteddfod Festival celebrates Welsh culture in August.
Public holidays may affect timing, availability and costs. See here for public holiday dates in Wales.
Unique Local Stories
Brands are looking for local stories that match their brand narrative. Our local teams are a great lead for sourcing those unique stories and characters.
If you are looking for stories for your next shoot, send us your brief and we will pitch you ideas.
If you have a unique story you would like to pitch to a brand anywhere in the world, pitch us your idea. We have well-established processes to ensure that your ideas are properly seen and protected.
Costs & Tax Incentives
Costs. Wales trades in the Great Britain Pound. As such it is a relatively expensive place to shoot, particularly for large, complex projects. That said, our Welsh service producer / fixer will negotiate local deals and provide the appropriate level of production support to match every budget. See here for the current VAT rate.
Tax Incentives. Films that pass the cultural test or qualify as a co-production are eligible for 25% UK Film Tax Relief of the qualifying UK production spend. See here for more information. There is also financing available from the Welsh government’s Media Investment Budget. For more information see Business Wales.
Film Crew & Talent
Crews. Wales has a small pool of local directors, directors of photography and stills photographers. Crews are of a high standard. London is a 3 hour drive from Cardiff should you ever need to look further.
Contact us if you are looking for a Cardiff based director, DP, photographer, videographer (cameraman / camera operator), camera assistant (focus puller), sound operator, grip, gaffer, stylist, hair and makeup, PA / runner, production driver, or any other film crew for your shoot in Wales.
Talent is non-union and buyouts are negotiable. Wales is an ethnically diverse country. Wales’s close proximity to London allows easy access to that pool of talent should you ever need to look further.
Wales Film Equipment
Equipment. Good depth and standard of locally available camera, grip and lighting equipment. Some specialized equipment needs to be brought in from London. For productions looking to bring in film equipment Wales is an ATA carnet country.
Communications. Communication is key. Our agility and global experience allows us to customise the right communications systems for every shoot.
Web posted casting, scouting, and videoconferencing.
For clients that are unable to attend set we offer a virtual video village solution. This dedicated and secure high-resolution video streaming platform allows clients from one or multiple timezones to view setups without compromise and to participate in real-time with the team on set. Separate systems can be set up for the discrete conversations that are required to make a job run right. Working remotely with our local teams reduces your content production costs, turnaround times, carbon footprint, and risks associated with unpredictable global events.
Art Department, Studios, Backlots, & Post Production
Art department and set construction is of a good standard. Set construction is expensive certainly compared to Eastern European options.
Studios and backlots. Roath Lock is the best known studio, and home to the Doctor Who TV show.
Post Production. Some post production facilities. Nearby London has more.
Visas & Work Permits
Wales is not a Schengen Area member state. US film crews can enter visa-free for stays of up to 6 months. There is no specific work permit required to film in Wales.
Transport & Accommodation
Roads are up to expected European standards. Several international and budget airlines service flights to Wales.
Accommodation. Recommended film friendly hotels in Cardiff include:
Park Plaza Cardiff
Lincoln House Hotel
Please contact us for corporate rates.
For longer stays we can also organize serviced apartments.
Safety. Wales is a very safe place for foreign productions to visit. See here for more information.
Down Time. Explore castles, mountains, forests and beaches.
Projects. For an example of TV commercials, stills campaigns, online content, corporate videos, virtual reality 360 content, feature films, TV series and documentaries shot in Wales, please see below:
Hire Wales Production Support & Shooting Crew
If you are looking for a film or photographic production service company, line producer or fixer for your shoot in Wales, please contact us.
If you are looking for a shooting crew for your shoot in Wales, such as a director, DoP, photographer, videographer (cameraman / camera operator), camera assistant (focus puller), sound operator, grip, gaffer, stylist, hair and makeup, PA / runner, production driver, please contact us.
We are able to provide you with answers, references and bids quickly.