“Bye, bye” fairytale weddings in the castle of “Downton Abbey”, the fault of Brexit
The dream location
Highclere Castle in southern England, where ‘Downton Abbey’ was filmed, is facing a severe shortage of staff due to a lack of EU workers. This shortage has forced the owner Lady Fiona Carnarvon to suspend the main business of the castle, which is the organization of weddings with more than 100 guests. There are still ceremonies with 20 guests, but that’s not enough to cover running costs which can amount to several thousand pounds a day. The absence of EU students working during the events created a staff shortage, moreover, the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the rising cost of living contributed to a decrease in the company’s turnover . Highclere Castle, which has also closed its public afternoon tea service, expects to be little more than breaking even this year on previous ones. Revenue from Highclere’s shop has also decreased as they no longer ship to EU countries. The castle owner said she was optimistic about new sources of income such as a £35 bottled gin, which is gaining momentum in the United States.