EXCITED shopkeepers watched from their windows while a scene from a new television drama was filmed in their street.

The camera crew was shooting scenes for the upcoming ITV drama series Grace - an adaptation of Peter James's crime novels.

The drama series has been written by acclaimed screenwriter Russell Lewis and is being filmed entirely at locations in Sussex.

John Simm, who stars in the lead role as detective Roy Grace, could be seen walking down a busy Sydney Street in Brighton this afternoon with a small crowd of extras and camera crew following.

Shopkeepers said they were asked to temporarily remove signs about face masks and social distancing, as the drama is not set in the Covid-19 era.

The Argus: Will Warburton, who works at To Be Worn Again in Sydney StreetWill Warburton, who works at To Be Worn Again in Sydney Street

Will Warburton, sales assistant at To Be Worn Again vintage clothes shop, said: "It's been pretty exciting - we've never had anything like it here before. It's nice to have the shop in the spotlight.

"They were walking right outside by the clothes rails and you get a glimpse of them talking and then they go off around the corner. It looks like it could have been the end of a scene or episode.

"They were very well dressed and suited and booted."

Ryan Coughlan, who owns dog gifts and accessories shop Holler Brighton, said he had been watching the crew go backwards and forwards down the street all afternoon.

The 42-year-old said: "They definitely did look like detectives.

"I think they had a rent-a-crowd of extras as there was a group of people following them each time.

The Argus: Ryan Coughlan, owner of Holler Brighton in Sydney StreetRyan Coughlan, owner of Holler Brighton in Sydney Street

"There was such a mix of different people, and one guy looked in my shop window each time on his way past. Hopefully the shop might appear on TV but they were shooting down the street.

"Sydney Street is such a good street - it's so colourful and all the shops look after each other.

"It's always exciting down here with everything going on, but it especially was today."

Lesley Burgess, who volunteers at Books for Amnesty Brighton, said the filming had even inspired her to pick up a Peter James book.

The Argus: Lesley Burgess, who volunteers at Books for Amnesty Lesley Burgess, who volunteers at Books for Amnesty

She said: "It was quite exciting - they've been going up and down the street several times today. It's great to show off Sydney Street and there has been a good atmosphere.

"Each time John Simm walked down the street he had to eat a sandwich, so goodness knows how many he had.

"It has inspired me to read some Peter James as I've not done before, so I'm going to give him a go. They say he's very accurate about the area."