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  Special report from Harry Potter 3 location
Updated 01 April 2003, 23.36
Both Knight Buses waiting to go
By Philip Westerman
CBBC Newsround on the Harry Potter set

If you're a wizard, it's dead easy to get the Knight Bus - just stick your wand out and signal.

But if you're a Muggle journalist, it's a little bit harder.

There's a mysterious journey to the little known London suburb of Palmers Green, a deadly struggle with on-set security and a 30-minute rainstorm with no umbrella.

I went through all this and more to get just a glimpse of the purple triple decker that magically whisks Harry from Magnolia Crescent to the Leaky Cauldron at the beginning of Prisoner of Azkaban.

Harry's trunk safely aboard the bus
Harry's trunk safely aboard the bus
Two buses

What was most surprising was that there were in fact two Knight Buses.

I saw both buses (one was for stunts) parked next to each other before filming started.

They were there to be shot driving along the road at night, and as I was upset to hear, no celebs were on set!

But suddenly, one drove off, with your intrepid Newsround reporter in hot pursuit - could this be a hot story about to break?

But because I was on foot, and it was a bus with an engine and wheels, it got away.

Inside the bus

Fortunately, a three storey purple bus is pretty hard to hide, and I found it down a small street surrounded by kids.

I managed to get pretty close, and saw Harry's Hogwarts trunk, the light fittings inside and even the beds which are meant to hold sleeping witches and wizards.

Fairly predictably I wasn't allowed to take any pics of the inside of the bus, but, believe me, it looked just how I'd imagined it from the book.

Crowds on the street
Crowds fill the streets to see the bus
As the sky started to get dark enough, the crew began to herd all the local people who had gathered for a peek at filming down the street.

The roads had to look deserted, and about three hundred gawping Potter fans might have ruined that effect.

They had planned to spray the roads with water to make the massive lights which towered over us on cranes reflect better.

Downpour

But they didn't need to, because it rained for half an hour, drenching the streets (and the crowd) just nicely.

Eventually, the bus came, but we'd all been pushed so far away we couldn't really see it.

After an hour of watching the bus go up and down the same street about 10 times, I figured that this was probably enough for even the biggest Potter fan.

All the filming inside the bus (with Harry and the others) is going smoothly at Leavesden Studios, well away from the public.

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More InfoBORDER=0
TV/FilmChris Columbus: Full interview
PicturesExclusive pix of Potter filiming
Find OutFind out about the Potter actors
Find OutOur full Potter section
ChatSwap goss on the Potter films
WinWin Potter DVDs and vids

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Past StoriesBORDER=0
Location report from Harry Potter 3 filming
Azkaban filming: Day one outside the studios
Dumbledore and Sirius cast for Azkaban
Potter fan snaps Azkaban film set

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