THE CHALLENGES

The challenges were often enormous. From a traveling circus to Dickensian back alleys. From a completely snowbound schoolhouse that had to be shot both interior and exterior in winter blizzards, to cricket fields, castles, caves full of bats and ships at sea!

Over the course of many, many episodes Sullivan and his team of writers opted to set scripts in other locations as well as Avonlea. The production team was challenged to create a permanent maritime seaport out of the cobblestone streets of a 19th century Toronto distillery.The fashionable private girls attended by Felicity was staged at Penryn Park, an estate in nearby Port Hope, Ontario, The locations grew more lavish, fanciful and complex as the series grew in size, character and scope. Meanwhile, the original interior sets for King Farm, Rose Cottage, the Dale House, the Pettibone House and the General Store were maintained across four sound stages in Sullivan Studios. Even these became crowded with the mammoth completion of two floors, offices, dining room and kitchen of the Edwardian seaside resort – The White Sands. Though Road to Avonlea grew in scale and imagination, it never lost its heart. Thanks to the talented team of designers and set decorators, as well as Sullivan’s production expertise, the show’s unique brand of humour and human drama was allowed to evolve as far as the writers’ imaginations could dream.

Set Design Stills