Tim Burton’s surprise visit to Forfar to play football

Helena & Tim at the Lochside Leisure Centre
Helena & Tim at the Lochside Leisure Centre

IT’S NOT every day that Forfar receives a surprise visit from Hollywood stars.

Director Tim Burton and his actress wife Helena Bonham Carter surprised the staff at the Lochside Leisure Centre when they turned up on Hogmanay to play a game of five-a-side football.

Unsuspecting workers at the leisure centre had a booking under the name of David Ogilvy, who is the 13th Earl of Airlie, and has two castles on a nearby estate.

The Earl has a 60,000 acre estate near Forfar where his two castles, Airlie Castle and Cortachy Castle, are situated.

The staff were shocked to see ‘Harry Potter’ star Helena and her director husband Tim arrive in the afternoon for a kickabout at the leisure centre.

A council source said: “It was a massive surprise for everyone at the centre - they’re not our usual customers!

“They were really lovely - a great couple and very down to earth and they seemed to enjoy their visit.”

Staff at the leisure centre posted a picture of Helena and Tim on the Angus Leisure Facebook page.

One employee wrote on the site: “They just came in to play fives. I think they were just here to bring in the New Year.”

Helena plays Bellatrix Lestrange in the Harry Potter movies and Tim is famous for films such as Edward Scissorhands and The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Helena often collaborates with Tim in films such as ‘Big Fish’, ‘Corpse Bride’, ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’, ‘Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street’, ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and ‘Dark Shadows’. In 2012, she played Miss Havisham in ‘Great Expectations’ and Madame Thénardier in ‘Les Misérables’.

The couple met in 2001 whilst filming ‘Planet Of The Apes’ and the pair have two sons Billy and Neil.