Apple Tree House with The Fillm Office and Poplar Harca's Devons Estate

This Spring, CBeebies welcomes three bright new stars to the channel in brand-new, live-action drama Apple Tree House.

The Film Office enabled filming for the programme and worked closely with the production to provide logistical support for the latest CBeebies drama at a sought after east London estate, the Devons Estate (owned and managed by Poplar Harca).

Through our work we delivered local community benefits, working with the production to provide local residents with the opportunity to become cast members and extras in the drama whilst also generating a financial return for the estate, all whilst not disrupting the daily lives of local residents and businesses.

"Apple Tree House is an exciting new children's drama, uniquely filmed on location, so ensuring the safety of both on screen child actors whilst working around the daily life of the estate were of paramount importance to us prior to agreeing filming on the estate. We were delighted with the productions professionalism which ensured both of the 3 week filming periods ran smoothly and without issue" - Ed Gramolt, The Film Office.

Apple Tree House Photograph - BBC

Apple Tree House follows Mali (Aamir Tai), an ordinary boy who has just moved on to an extraordinary inner-city estate, where he meets his new friends Sam (Miranda Sarfo Peprah) and Bella (Summer Jenkins).

The friends go on adventures within the Apple Tree House estate, solving daily problems and overcoming childhood dilemmas - all within the safety net of their loving families and the inspirational urban community that surrounds them.

The young actors - aged between 7 and 9 years old - were found after the production team went into local schools, community groups and used social media to find the right children for the roles. Both Aamir and Miranda were new to acting and all three secured the roles after the team saw nearly 1,500 children during the audition process.

"Apple Tree House embodies all that CBeebies stands for - a sense of fun, curiosity and adventure as well as sharing valuable life lessons in responsibility, kindness and being a good friend."

- Kay Benbow, Contoller, CBeebies

As well as the three main children the audience will be introduced to a wealth of characters, including Mali's grandma Zainab (Shaheen Khan) and Sam's father Kobi (William Vanderpuye, one of the key vocal talents behind the Rastamouse series).

Speaking about playing Mali, Aamir says: "I hadn't done any acting before but I really enjoyed playing Mali and making new friends. I especially liked the adventures with Grandma Zainab as it reminded me of my own grandma at home, who can't wait to see me on TV!"

Apple Tree House is created by William Vanderpuye, Maria Timotheou and Akindele Akinsiku and is inspired by reflections on their own childhoods. The series has been developed for television by award-winning Rastamouse producers Eugenio Perez and Gregory Boardman.

Apple Tree House is due to premiere on CBeebies next month.

- Courtesy of BBC Media Centre (


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