I had absolutely no idea how big the models were (for Harry Potter) until seeing this article, Wow!
Ever since the first Harry Potter novel was released almost 15 years ago, children and adults alike have fantasised about visiting its famous boarding school for wizards and witches.
But, as these incredible pictures show, they need to dream no longer.
Whether you show magic ability or not – fans now have the opportunity to get as close to Hogwarts Castle as they are ever likely to get.
This extraordinary model of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is due to go on display for the first time.
Incredible: This extraordinary model of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is due to go on display for the first time
Proud: Jose Granell, model supervisor, is pictured with the model of Hogwarts Castle. It has been used for every one of the Harry Potter films
Impressive: The model as it appears in the film Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
The model was built for the first film – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – and has been used for exterior shots in every film since.
When all the time spent by 86 artists and crew members is added up, it took an incredible 74 years to build.
Measuring 50 feet across, it has more than 2,500 fibre optic lights to simulate lantern torches and students passing through hallways.
It even has miniature owls in the Owlery and hinges on the doors.
The castle, which was based on Durham Cathedral and Alnwick Castle, is now due to go on display as part of The Making Of Harry Potter studio tour at Leavesden Studios, near Watford.
Bafta award-winning production designer Stuart Craig designed and built the castle with the rest of his team.
He said: ‘Everything to the right of the viaduct is in fact Durham Cathedral.
‘But the profile has been changed so that there are tall, pointy spires so there’s plenty of theatrical exaggeration.
‘It’s pretty extravagant, I have to say.’
The castle will be on display as part of the Warner Bros Harry Potter studio tour in London from March 31.
The tour promises: ‘For the first time, the doors are going to be opened for everyone at the studio where it first began.
‘You’ll have the chance to go behind-the-scenes and see many things the camera never showed. From breathtakingly detailed sets to stunning costumes, props and animatronics, Warner Bros.
‘Studio Tour London provides a unique showcase of the extraordinary British artistry, technology and talent that went into making the most successful film series of all time.
The three-hour tour will also take Harry Potter fans inside the Great Hall and Dumbledore’s office.
Visitors will also be able to step onto cobbles of Diagon Alley, walking past the the shop fronts of Ollivanders wand shop, Flourish and Blotts, the Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, Gringotts Wizarding Bank and Eeylops Owl Emporium.
Iconic props from the films, including Harry’s Nimbus 2000 broomstick and Hagrid’s motorcycle will be on display alongside life-sized models of some of the creatures from the films.
Other film sets included in the tour include the Gryffindor common room, the boys’ dormitory, Hagrid’s hut, Potion’s classroom and Professor Umbridge’s office at the Ministry of Magic.
Enormous: The castle was based on Durham Cathedral and Alnwick Castle. Stuart Craig, production manager, is dwarfed by the massive structure
Chance for all to see: The castle will go on display as part of The Making Of Harry Potter studio tour at Leavesden Studios, London
Durham cathedral (left) was used as the basis for ‘everything to the right of the viaduct’, but there was ‘plenty of theatrical exaggeration’, while Alnwick Castle (right) was both the basis for some the design of the castle and where the flying lesson scenes were filmed
See how the model was created and take a ‘tour’ of Hogwarts for yourself here.