(Credit: Netflix)

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Exploring the filming locations of Netflix’s ‘Top Boy’

Netflix recently dropped the new season for Ronan Bennett’s popular show, Top Boy which is set in the fictional Summerhouse estate, on March 18th, 2022. 

With Ashley Walters as Dushane Hill and Kane Robinson as Gerald Sullivan in the lead, this honest and thought-provoking show ended on a cliffhanger in the previous season where the mysterious gunshot put Dris’ fate on the line where the rookies actually turned out to be police officers.

Walters had emphasised how the project gives a “raw, real representation of the street culture” and helps gain an insight into the reasons behind the various choices made by the characters. 

Walters and Robinson will be joined by Araloyin Oshunremi, Kadeem Ramsay, Saffron Hocking, Jasmine Jobson, Little Simz, Michael Ward, Jolade Obasola and Hope Ikpoku Jr. The new cast embers include Adwoa Aboah, Nolay and Erin Kellyman. 

The second season saw a variety of new picturesque locations as the show moved from just the mean streets of London into the sunny beauty of southern Spain. As the executive producer Alasdair Flind confirmed, while East London still remains the “main stage”, “the business empire of our main characters has been expanding and the tentacles of their criminal activities get longer”. 

Here are the filming locations of the show:

Where was Netflix’s ‘Top Boy’ filmed?

Hackney 

Hackney has featured prominently in the show. Number One Cafe in London Fields is one of the most famous locations from the show that is now frequented by fans who love to see Dushane’s office. Dushane’s gang is seen frequenting the Ridley Road Market in Dalston where almost everything is available, from cheap wedding dresses to knock-off videos and goat meat. While swanky apartments and fancy bars have cropped up in Dalston, this century-old market has stood strong against gentrification. 

Dushane’s expensive new flat is near Hoxton and symbolises “a swanky loft apartment that you see everywhere nowadays in East London,” according to Flind. Flind spoke about how the series has been also filmed in Brixton, Romford and the Isle of Dogs. the school scenes were filmed in Walworth Academy in Southwark and Petchey Academy in Hackney, the court scene was shot in Blackfriars Crown Court and the money laundering shop was located in Poplar. 

Costa de la Luz

Much of the filming took place on the sun-soaked Andalusian beaches of Costa de la Luz in Spain. When Dushane is seen sparring with his supplier, he hops on a plane to the location. Due to the year-round sunshine, the place is often referred to as the “coast of light”.  Hilltop towns like Vejer de la Frontera serve as tourist spots while most surfers flock to Tarifa. 

Talking about Costa de la Luz, Flind said, “It was incredibly beautiful and a great way of discovering lots of lovely little hidden bays along that coast.” Top Boy filming took place along the beaches “Cadiz and Tarifa, in places like Barbate, Conil de la Frontera and Roche”. The crew was based in Cadiz which is known for the tasty fried fish, the golden-domed cathedral and the nostalgic cobbled roads. 

Places in East London 

Some old and new spots from East London feature in the series. In the first episode, Lizzie (Lisa Dwan) has a very intense dinner at a restaurant in Olympic Park’s East Village, named Darkhorse. The canal scenes in the series were filmed in Olympic Park in Stratford. A picturesque spot, various walking and cycling routes run along with the river and house narrowboat cafes and bars. 

An old and popular nook in form of a historic 1520 bar that was frequented by Charles Dickens, Princess Margaret and Samuel Pepys, feature in the series. locate d n Wapping, The Prospect of Whitby makes a teeny cameo in the show. 

Tangier 

After Jamie gets out of prison, she leaves for Morocco to look for the mole. Due to pandemic restrictions, most of the Moroccan beach scenes were, however, shot in Spain, in Tangier. Tangier has been the European gateway to Africa and has seen a blend of various cultures. 

Tangier is a brilliant and picturesque location that boasts of a beautiful medina named Chefchaouen. Within a 15th century fortress, lies a maze market. Close to Tangier is Cape Spartel where the Mediterranean Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean. 

Albert Dock in Liverpool 

When Top Boy gradually moves the action to the North West, it features one of the most prominent landmarks in Liverpool, the Albert Dock. Opened in the mid-19th century, the Royal Albert Dock comprises a series of red buildings and warehouses in the area. 

The brick warehouses were built to store tea, cotton, sugar and other imports from around the world. The area is now a popular tourist spot with various indie cafes and aesthetic stores, the Tate Liverpool and a dedicated The Beatles museum.