WITH their wild terrain and pristine beaches, the remote islands of Uist are thought of a single of the nation’s greatest-held secrets.
But the Outer Hebrides had been just about overrun with movie star presenters past autumn following the Covid pandemic curtailed globetrotting.
Joanna Lumley recollects right now how she bumped into Jeremy Clarkson, James May well, Richard Hammond and their 45-sturdy crew as they filmed The Grand Tour on the six-island chain, which has a overall population of just more than 5,000.
The trio also crossed paths with comedians Bob Mortimer and Paul Whitehouse, no doubt keen to capture some of the area’s considerable trout and salmon for their BBC2 collection Absent Fishing.
Just months afterwards, Dame Darcey Bussell would make the 40-mile journey from the mainland for her new Wild Coasts Of Scotland demonstrate.
And Romesh Ranganathan also visited the Outer Hebrides – namely the isles of Skye, Harris and Lewis – for his Christmas BBC present The Misadventures Of Romesh Ranganathan.
Clarkson just lately quipped how the Outer Hebrides ‘must have accomplished fairly well out of Covid’ in conditions of readers – a sentiment not disputed by publican Alan Graham, from South Uist’s Orasay Inn.
‘We’ve experienced a great deal,’ he reported. ‘Obviously, these varieties of programmes aid us. We constantly enjoy the publicity it provides us. ‘There is no doubt about it, this is a pretty fascinating put to check out.’
Ms Lumley, whose prior journey reveals have incorporated sailing the Nile, admits in today’s You magazine that the travelogue sector is saturated. ‘Michael Palin kicked it off,’ she suggests. ‘But now everybody’s doing it. Stephen Fry, Sue Perkins – you name it, somebody’s been there right before you. The globe has turn into very smaller in conditions of what has not been performed.’
Ms Lumley had planned to make a documentary previous calendar year retracing the historical spice route, but ended up filming at magnificence places throughout the British Isles for the duration of the temporary lull amongst lockdowns.
Her Household Sweet House introduced on ITV final week, highlighting the most effective of the Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales and Essex.
Patricia Yates, of VisitBritain, explained: ‘These programmes are quite very good at acquiring out the envisioned and the unexpected and, of system, always looks lovely. Having a individuality that connects you to it is constantly a genuine good.’