CAST and crew of the Dr Blake Murder Mysteries wound back time on Lydiard Street yesterday when they called action on the first day of street filming for the crime drama series.
Looking dapper in 1950s clothes and stepping from a vintage car, series star Craig McLachlan filmed a scene at the Mining Exchange Gold Shop, before joining the full cast for more filming at the Old Colonists’ Club.
Producer George Adams said shooting was progressing well, with a successful day on Wednesday at Pax Hill Scout Camp.
“We were filming a sequence from a later episode of the show involving a mine accident,” he said.
“We’re also establishing Ballarat as a town, which we haven’t done to date, hence the signage on Lydiard Street and all the vintage cars.
“The streetscapes in Ballarat are gorgeous. It’s very easy to film.”
The Mining Exchange Gold Shop owners Cordell and Kate Kent were “chuffed” their shop was selected as a location for the series.
Mr Kent said the shop needed only minimal changes to transform it into a set.
“Doctor Blake is selling a gold nugget,” Mr Kent said.
“We’re helping them out with some advice on weighing up gold and the scales and weights we used at the time.”
Ballarat Regional Tourism director George Sossi said traders on Lydiard Street had embraced the production, even with the disruption to their businesses on the day.
He said Ballarat was a film- friendly city.
“It’s great visually for Ballarat but also for the economy,” he said.
“Unlike some other shows they do, they’re keeping the Ballarat name there. You couldn’t ask for a better promotion.”