A MAJOR new television programme will be shot at a brand new studio space in Yorkshire from this month.

The former RAF base at Church Fenton has been converted into The Yorkshire Studios, and will host the new ITV show Victoria for seven months.

Victoria is an eight part drama which looks at the early life of Queen Victoria, who will be played by Jenna Coleman, of Doctor Who and Death Comes to Pemberley.

The drama will follow the early life the monarch from her ascension to the throne at 18, through to her courtship and marriage to Prince Albert.

Property firm Makin Enterprises owns the former RAF site near Tadcaster, and Screen Yorkshire has redeveloped more than 100,000 sq ft of air hangar into studio space.

The site comprises three aircraft hangars, each over 30,000 sq ft and 36 ft high, office space, garages, workshops, extensive parking, roadways and runways, and programme bosses hope Victoria will be the first of many productions to film at the new studio.

Chief Executive of Screen Yorkshire Sally Joynson said: "After months of hard work, we’re thrilled to open the doors of The Yorkshire Studios to Mammoth Screen for this landmark ITV drama.

"As long term collaborators on some of Screen Yorkshire’s most successful TV productions, we couldn’t have hoped for a better partner with whom to embark on this exciting new journey. Featuring an outstanding cast and creative team, ‘Victoria’ already has all the hallmarks of great British TV at its very best."

Damien Timmer, managing director of production company Mammoth Screen, said: "The Yorkshire Studios give us all the space we need for our massively ambitious studio build, are a stone’s throw from Leeds and close to the many fantastic locations which we’ll need to capture the grandeur and opulence that the series demands."

Jenna Coleman was also seen filming scenes from Death Comes To Pemberley in York last year.

Yorkshire’s film credits have been on the rise recently, with productions including:

l The BBC’s Jonathon Strange And Mr Norrell filmed in York last year

l Death Comes To Pemberley which was filmed on location at Castle Howard, the Eye of York, and St William’s College.

l The Dads’ Army film, shot last year, used Bridlington as Walmington-on Sea- The 2006 film Garfield 2 filmed external scenes at Castle Howard

- A BBC version of J B Priestley’s An Inspector Calls filmed in Malton.

- Cate Blanchett filmed her coronation scene as Elizabeth I, for the 1998 film Elizabeth, in York Minster.

- York station stood in for King’s Cross in Chariots of Fire.