Avengers arrive in Durham as filming starts at cathedral

It’s an icon of the North East which once witnessed much turbulence during the civil war.

Now it is providing the backdrop for the next instalment of the bust-up in the world of Marvel’s superheroes.

It is believed Durham Cathedral is being used to film a scene for Avengers: Infinity War, which is expected to hit the big screen next April.

A large number of trucks - including some bearing the name Pinewood Lighting - have set up outside the cathedral on Palace Green.

Chris Hemsworth, who plays Thor in the franchise has been spotted in the city, according to fans.

The actors expected to star in the film include Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Chris Evans as Captain America, Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk, Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther, as well as Karen Gillan as Nebula and Samuel L Jackson as Nick Fury.

Pinewood Studios film crew at Durham Cathedral.

Pinewood Studios film crew at Durham Cathedral.

Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel is also expected to make her debut.

It has been suggested the movie could become the most expensive ever made with a budget of $400million, with a part two expected to follow in 2019.

The cathedral has confirmed a “major project” is under way, but declined to comment further.

Some sections of the building have been closed off to the public.

Occasionally because of a special event or major service the cathedral has restricted access or is closed to visitors.

Durham Cathedral

A statement on its site said: “Occasionally because of a special event or major service the cathedral has restricted access or is closed to visitors.

“As part of a major project the cathedral will be closed to visitors on Thursday, May 4, (from 11.30am) and all day on Friday 5, Saturday 6 and Tuesday, May 9.

“This includes the cathedral shop and the Undercroft Restaurant which are closed all day on Thursday 4, Friday 5, Saturday 6 and Tuesday, May 9.

“Open Treasure will be closed to visitors all day on Thursday 4, Friday 5, Saturday 6 and Tuesday, May 9.

Palace Green has been the centre of activities.

Palace Green has been the centre of activities.

“The Galilee Chapel will be closed to visitors from April 19 - May 19.

“Services will take place as usual and visitors to Durham are welcome to join us in worship.

“We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

“During the temporary closures there will be an information point in front of the cathedral with suggestions of other things to do, including free guided and self-guided tours of the exterior of the Durham World Heritage Site.”

Services expected to continue include 8.45am Morning Prayer in the Quire, 12.30pm Holy Communion in the Chapel of the Holy Cross, accessed by the college and 5.15pm Evensong in the Quire.

Filming for the movie has already taken place in Edinburgh.

Pinewood Studios film crew at Durham Cathedral. Picture by FRANK REID

Pinewood Studios film crew at Durham Cathedral. Picture by FRANK REID

Access has been restricted to the grounds of the church and the building itself.

Access has been restricted to the grounds of the church and the building itself.