As soon as I realised that Becoming Jane was filmed in, among others,
I also learn from the Memoir of Chief Justice Lefroy that the old Tom Lefroy spent his last three years in Newcourt, Bray, and there is no evidence that Julian Jarrold &c were aware of this fact. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t criticize them here. In fact, I find the coincidence very very interesting.
Here’s what his son Thomas Lefroy said in the Memoir (p. 382):
‘For some years previous to his death, he found that in the air of Bray he was less subject to the bronchial attacks from which he occasionally suffered than in Longford, and after his retirement from the Bench, he seldom spent any length of time at his own country seat. In 1866 he rented the pretty villa of Newcourt, near Bray, where he resided up to his death on
Tom Lefroy resigned from his position as the Chief Justice of Ireland after July 11, 1866 (a new Chief Justice, the Right Hon. James Whtieside took his seat on
Rachel and I tried to locate which house in Newcourt he rented in 1866, but we have not succeeded. Either someone from
From the map (click the map to enlarge), we can see Ardmore Studios (on
I bet the old Tom Lefroy, when he was fit enough, often rode the countryside of Bray municipality, even passing through the woods that would later be the
Tom Lefroy would then either join the Meaths’ dinner, or just sipping the afternoon tea with Lord Meath, in the very mansion the casts and crew of Becoming Jane made the movie two centuries later. They would talk of the old days, how fine the day was, or of Scriptures. Tom would then wander the woods of Newcourt and the gardens of Killruddery with his daughter Jane, and their steps would be traced back by Anne Hathaway and James McAvoy much later on in March/April 2006.
Lefroy, T. 1871, Memoir of Chief Justice Lefroy, Hodges, Foster & Co., Dublin.
Pic 2: Killruddery House
Pic 3: Map of Bray municipality
Pic 4: A sketch from 'Two Days in Wicklow'