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Christmas comes early as David Tennant lands to film Nativity 2

Oswestry | News | Published:

It may have been Halloween, but the village of Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant, near Oswestry, was decked out for Christmas as it welcomed time-traveller David Tennant. [gallery] It may have been Halloween, but the village of Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant, near Oswestry, was decked out for Christmas as it welcomed time-traveller David Tennant. But the actor was not reprising his role from Doctor Who. Instead, the star braved the wind and rain to film scenes for upcoming film Nativity 2. Villagers also braved the conditions to catch a glimpse of the star who has a double starring role as twin teachers in the sequel to the 2009 hit comedy Nativity! See more pictures in our gallery to your right The film, written and directed by Debbie Isitt and produced by Nick Jones of Mirrorball Films, sees action in Coventry and Wales. As well as yesterday's scenes in Llanrhaeadr village, filming was due to take place today at Llanrhaeadr Waterfall, Lake Vyrnwy and Bala as part of a plot which sees pupils embarking on a school trip. [24link]

It may have been Halloween, but the village of Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant, near Oswestry, was decked out for Christmas as it welcomed time-traveller David Tennant.

But the actor was not reprising his role from Doctor Who. Instead, the star braved the wind and rain to film scenes for upcoming film Nativity 2.

Villagers also braved the conditions to catch a glimpse of the star who has a double starring role as twin teachers in the sequel to the 2009 hit comedy Nativity!

The film, written and directed by Debbie Isitt and produced by Nick Jones of Mirrorball Films, sees action in Coventry and Wales.

As well as yesterday's scenes in Llanrhaeadr village, filming was due to take place today at Llanrhaeadr Waterfall, Lake Vyrnwy and Bala as part of a plot which sees pupils embarking on a school trip.

The story of Nativity 2 is based on a school putting on a Christmas performance in competition with other schools.

Tennant plays a supply temp teacher leading a group of under-achieving children in the national contest. He also plays his golden-boy brother, who is leading the challenge from a posh private school.

Also in the cast is Marc Wootton who has appeared in numerous TV comedies as well as taking the role of Bottom in the Royal Shakespeare Company's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream this year. He also starred in Nativity!

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Wootton was filming with the child members of the cast in Llanrhaeadr's Market Square yesterday afternoon where another 'star' of the film, a yellow amphibious bus 'Desdemona' was parked.

They were filmed in a sequence involving local restaurant Gegin Fach and then The Spar Shop and Bodalwyn Newsagents.

Tennant was glimpsed getting on to the bus but onlookers had to wait for more than an hour to see him again when he stepped out during a break in filming.

All the shops in the centre of the village, as well as the Wynnstay Hotel, were specially decorated for Christmas by the film company, headed by designer Chris Roope.

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"It may only be Halloween, but we've set everything up to look like Christmas," he said. The arrival of the film crew and stars has been a welcome boost to businesses and could prove a future boon to tourism as more film fans, keen to follow in the footsteps of the stars, check out Llanrhaeadr.

It is the second major film to use the village as a film location.

The first was the 1995 Hugh Grant hit The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill But Came Down A Mountain.

This week's filming has brought an immediate cash injection to several local businesses.

Jane Stead, owner of the Spar in Llanrhaeadr's Market Square, said: "This should get more people coming here – it worked with The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill because we still get people coming in and asking about that and what it was all about.

"This film has been quite an experience for us because the film crew wanted it to look like Christmas so they have been into all the shops around the square and decorating our windows with Christmas decorations."

Post mistress Jo Williams admitted she was not too bothered about seeing the star of Nativity 2 but said the filming was good for the village. "It's nice to see something positive, particularly with the recession going on. We had film people in the shop for two hours this morning decorating the windows so Christmas has really come early for us this year."

Newsagent Ian Jones had a fully decorated Christmas tree set up in his shop .

"The film crew arrived on Sunday and has been busy all morning decorating the shops ready for filming this afternoon.

We had already put a few Christmas decorations in our window but nothing like it is now," he said. Mr Jones added that as well as a boost for local businesses, the filming had benefited the village's recreation ground where the film company had set up camp with huge trailers and catering vans looking after the needs of the actors and crew.

Rooms had also been booked at the Wynnstay Hotel, though bar manager Karen Swanwick said they had not been told who they were for.

"One of the rooms has a dressing room. We're hoping it will be David Tennant," she said. Nativity 2 is due to be released next year.

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