Long renowned for its alum industry, Ravenscar might also find itself noted in the annals of heavy metal history as rock legends Saxon chose to film videos for two tracks from their latest album ‘Call to Arms’ here.
Over two days in March 2011, parts of Raven Hall Hotel, Peak Alum Works and the beach became the set for videos shot by students of Television and Journalism from the Cardiff School of Creative and Cultural Industries at the University of Glamorgan. National Trust staff lent a hand as makeshift roadies, hefting drum kits and braziers to the cliff edge under the direction of the young film makers and the watchful eye of Saxon frontman, Biff Byford and fellow band members Paul Quinn (guitar), Nigel Glockler (drums), Nibbs Carter (bass) and Doug Scarratt (guitar).
The usually quiet village and clifftops of Ravenscar might seem like an unusual choice of location, but the ruins of the alum works, windswept landscape and dramatic views proved a fitting choice. Nor was it just a lucky find - Biff is a proud resident of the North Yorkshire Coast and knows the area well.
Filming attracted a few curious onlookers amongst residents, passing walkers and guests staying at Low Peak holiday cottage (who luckily didn’t mind the activity and loud music!). Mark Bradley, Coast and Countryside Manager and long time heavy metal fan, was delighted to welcome the band to one of the sites under his care. He said:
‘It’s fantastic to do something a bit different. This is not the kind of thing people usually expect the National Trust to be involved with and it certainly might be an eye – and ear – opener to new audiences! We’d welcome the opportunity to work with the students again, and Saxon are welcome back any time.’