Filming for new movie takes place in Newhaven – with locals recruited to star as extras

Local people were recruited as extras to take part in an afternoon of filming in Newhaven on Friday.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 11:57 am
One of the scenes filmed in Newhaven. Photo by Martin Tomes

A film crew descended on the town to shoot scenes for ‘Vindication Swim’, a new film directed by Elliott Hasler from Brighton – the UK’s youngest film director.

Set in the 1920s, it tells the inspirational story of swimmer Mercedes Gleitze, who is forced to into a fight to retain her record as the first English woman to swim the Channel.

Of German immigrant parents, Mercedes grew up in Brighton, but her parents, despite their years in Brighton, had never sought British citizenship.

One of the scenes filmed in Newhaven. Photo by Martin Tomes

Her father was interned when World War One broke out, and her mother, though she was permitted to stay, opted to return to Germany with her children, including Mercedes.

Mercedes decided she wanted to be in England and tried to swim back at the age of 17 - an attempt which fuelled her Channel-swimming ambitions.

Mr Hasler said he was unable to go into the details of the scenes being shot in Newhaven, but said: “We recruited locals as extras and the boats used were also all owned and crewed by locals too!”

Filming for the movie has also taken place in other Sussex locations, including Cuckmere Haven, Stanmer House, Eastbourne Pier and Brighton Theatre.

One of the scenes filmed in Newhaven. Photo by Martin Tomes

Mr Hasler has previously said the film would be released in summer 2022.

One of the scenes filmed in Newhaven. Photo by Martin Tomes