Central scenes in multi-award-winning film The King’s Speech involve large crowds of Bradford people – but among them are 1,500 inflatable mannequins.

The Inflatable Crowd Company in Bingley used life-size models for the movie, partly filmed at Odsal Stadium, which is on release from today.

Extras – many of whom turned up for filming in December, 2009, following an appeal in the Telegraph & Argus – were placed among inflatables in crowd scenes.

Former Bingley Grammar School student Danny Burraway is company director. He said: “When I was production manager on the film Bronson we used the Inflatable Crowd Company in Los Angeles and I thought it would be great to set up a UK branch.”

Mr Burraway said an inflatable crowd can save up to 90 per cent of production costs.

The plastic dolls take seconds to inflate, then Mr Burraway and his crew dress them in relevant styles. “We provide costumes, hats and wigs,” he said. “The emphasis is on colour. For The King’s Speech we used overcoats in grey and dark colours, trilby hats and headscarves.”

The King’s Speech, starring Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush, is about George VI’s friendship with a maverick Australian speech therapist who helped him overcome his stammer.

Odsal Stadium was the main regional location. Film agency Screen Yorkshire provided crew and locations.

It is not the first time director Tom Hooper has filmed in Bradford. In 2008 he shot scenes for The Damned United at the old city centre police station.