By Nicci Rae
Magical Harrow – As fans look forward to the new Harry Potter reunion film, we look back on Harrow School’s cameo role in Harry Potter & The Philosopher’s Stone.
We all know that Harrow is a pretty magical place and, it seems, not just for us muggles! Eagle eyed Harrovians may have spotted a familiar sight in the first of the Harry Potter films, based on the series of books by J.K. Rowling.
Harrow casts a spell on the film world
Released in 2001, Harry Potter & The Philosopher’s Stone enjoyed worldwide box office takings of a staggering $965,054,122 and was the foundation for dazzling careers for actors such as Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson.
On the franchise’s 20th anniversary, fans are eagerly awaiting the New Year’s Day release of the latest film, Return To Hogwarts and, to celebrate, we look back on Harrow’s own contribution to this massively successful series.
In Harry Potter & The Philosopher’s Stone, orphaned Harry Potter discovers that he’s anything but an ordinary boy as he is transported from the fictional town of Little Whinging in Surrey to the magical world of Hogwarts School of Wizardry.
In the smash hit film, a number of locations were used to portray Hogwarts – including our very own Harrow School. During a scene in which Hermione (played by Emma Watson) levitates a feather during Professor Flitwick’s Charms Class, the Hogwarts classroom is, in fact, the Four Form Room of Harrow Old Schools and was chosen for its magnificent (and slightly spooky) architecture.
Books! And Cleverness!
Located in the Old Schools building, The Fourth Form Room is known as the spiritual heart of Harrow School, dating back to 1615. While Harry Potter and his pals were able to access Hogwarts via Platform 9 ¾ at Kings Cross Station, getting into Harrow School’s Fourth Form Room is a little trickier for the rest of us as it is only available for exclusive events whereby 100% of the proceeds are donated to a bursary for a Harrow School student
Carved in stone
While we’re sure that Harry and his friends enjoyed their time in the Fourth Form Room, we’re hoping that they were better behaved than some previous students, including four British Prime Ministers, who left their mark on the school in more ways than one. Some notable names, including Robert Peel, Anthony Trollope, Spencer Perceval and H.Temple (Lord Palmerston) can still be seen carved into the walls of the Fourth Form Room.
Like some of Harrow School’s famous students, sadly some of the stars of the Harry Potter films, including Alan Rickman and Richard Harris, have since moved onto new, magical adventures but, like Harry, Harrow School remains a solid and stupendous part of our history.