Experience London Like the Crawley Family with Noovie “Downton Abbey” Sweepstakes

With the release of Downton Abbey in the United States set for tomorrow (September 20), excitement among fans of the series is sure to be growing. Besides preparing for their favorite characters to hit the big screen, fans in the US have the chance to win a trip to the United Kingdom for a delightful Downton Abbey experience.

In partnership with VisitBritain and Focus Features, the Noovie sweepstakes give fans a chance to live life like the Crawleys (well, almost) with round-trip flights to London, four nights in hotel accommodations, and two days of Downton Abbey-inspired touring.



One lucky winner and their guest will get to visit some of the locations seen in the movie such as Windsor Castle, Stonehenge, and the Roman Baths. The sweepstakes closes on October 3 at 11:59 p.m., and a winner will be drawn on October 4.

Returning to the world of Downton Abbey is Dame Maggie Smith (Minerva McGonagall) as the Dowager Countess, and a new face for this installment is Imelda Staunton (Dolores Umbridge) as new character Lady Maud Bagshaw. Speaking to Town & Country at the premiere for the movie in New York City, Staunton revealed that as a newcomer, she was cautious to not disappoint the series’ loyal audience:

The big task is to make sure you don’t disappoint this audience. I’m coming in, and that’s very nice, but they want to see the people they’ve loved for six or seven years. So I’m happy to be just around the edges of that.

In addition to Potter connections, it appears that some members of the cast of Downton Abbey also have royal connections.

When receiving her CBE in 2015, Staunton was told by the Duke of Cambridge (Prince William) that his children listen to the audiobook of The Gruffalo, which Staunton narrates:

He and Kate [the Duchess of Cambridge] were listening to me in the car, with the kids, singing a funny children’s song. So that’s quite nice.

And Max Brown (The RoyalsThe Tudors), who plays valet Richard Ellis in the movie, used to play soccer in Los Angeles with Lord Frederick Windsor (son of one of Queen Elizabeth’s first cousins) and has since played a game on the grounds of Buckingham Palace!

After, we all moved back to London, and he said, ‘do you want to come and play football? It’s at the Palace.’ I said, ‘what?’ And he said, ‘just come in the back entrance, and we’ll play on the palace fields.’ So we played football against the palace staff, and I met all the real[-]life versions of my character.

With the sweepstakes and the release of Downton Abbey in the US, there is a lot for fans to be excited about. If you can’t wait to see the movie, check out MuggleNet’s review, but be warned – it contains spoilers!

Lucy O'Shea

I was given a copy of Philosopher's Stone in 2001, and instantly, I was hooked. Since then, my passion for Potter has been equaled only by my passion for fair access to education (and watching motorsport). A spell I wish could exist in the Muggle world is the summoning charm because this Hufflepuff is not a "particularly good finder"!

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