Vera stars spotted filming at Sunderland's civic centre car park as work continues on new series

Detective Chief Inspector Vera Stanhope and her right hand man Detective Sergeant Aiden Healy have been on the scene of the crime series’ latest set – Sunderland Civic Centre’s car park.

Wednesday, 5th May 2021, 11:56 am

The Burdon Road multi-storey is being used by the hit programme’s makers as they work on the 11ths series of the ITV detective show today, Wednesday, May 5.

Brenda Blethyn, who takes the lead role in the North East-set drama, and Kenny Doughty, who plays Dec Sgt Healy, have been spotted alongside the production crew at the spot – known to anyone who knows it as as grim and crumbling, with the structure set for demolition once Sunderland City Council makes the move to the new City Hall later this year.

Filming of the six feature-length episodes went into production between the autumn and Christmas ready for broadcast this year, with the remaining instalments to be shot this spring for broadcast next year.

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Brenda Blethyn, snapped by Naomi McDonald, as the production crew of Vera used Sunderland Civic Centre's car park as a set.
Brenda Blethyn, snapped by Naomi McDonald, as the production crew of Vera used Sunderland Civic Centre's car park as a set.

Brenda and Kenny are joined once again by Jon Morrison who plays Det Con Kenny Lockhart, Riley Jones who plays Det Con Mark Edwards and Ibinabo Jack who plays Det Con Jacqueline Williams.

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The award-winning show is made by Silverprint Pictures, which is part of ITV Studios, and its last series drew in an average of 7.5 million viewers in the UK, while 150 territories worldwide also get to glimpse the region as the backdrop of its stories.

As the series was confirmed, Brenda said: “I’m really looking forward to working on the next series of Vera.

Brenda Blethyn on the scene of filming for the 11th series of Vera.

"The safety of all personnel is always at the forefront of production, and with all the extra Covid precautions in place we will relish creating and delivering six cracking new episodes.”

The programme’s makers had to push back their schedule due to the pandemic.

Vera is commissioned by ITV’s Head of Drama Polly Hill and Drama Commissioner Huw Kennair Jones who said: “Vera is one of ITV Drama's most loved series so we're delighted it’s returning to production.

DCI Vera Stanhope, played by Brenda Blethyn, and Kenny Doughty who returns as Det Sgt Aiden Healy, in Sunderland as they filmed the ITV hit drama, both photographed by omi McDonald.

"We can't wait to welcome the brilliant Brenda Blethyn and the rest of the cast back on to our screens for what promises to be an exceptional series eleven.”

The six self-contained crime stories are inspired by the best-selling novels and characters created by crime writer Ann Cleeves.

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The production team's vans all lined up on Burdon Road.

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Armed officers appear to be part of the storyline in the episode which uses Sunderland Civic Centre car park as its backdrop.
The latest episodes of Vera are expected to go out later this year and into 2022.
Naomi McDonald captured this shot of a police car being used in the drama as it was filmed in the multi-storey.