HRH The Prince of Wales to guest edit Countryfile as programme celebrates 25th anniversary
Is it not quite revealing that the BBC’s Countryfile programme has become so tremendously popular? Ever since they moved it to its prime-time slot on a Sunday night, it has become one of their most successful television programmes, with over seven million viewers a week. There is evidently a thirst for the countryside and for the culture it represents."HRH The Prince of Wales
For this special edition of the programme, the Countryfile team film at The Prince’s organic farm in Gloucestershire. The programme also follows the Prince as he visits his rural initiatives, which are aimed at improving the lives of people working in the countryside, including Paul and Jennifer Johnson and their children, who raise sheep on the fells of Upper Teesdale in County Durham; it’s 1500 feet above sea-level and one of the harshest landscapes in the country.
In interviews with Julia Bradbury and Matt Baker, The Prince discusses the personal importance he attaches to the countryside and explains the reasons behind his choices for this anniversary programme. He also visits a South London school that has seen exam results improve as it tries to reconnect its pupils with the soil by growing their own veg.
Speaking of the importance of the British countryside in a speech to the Oxford Farming Conference on 3 January, Prince Charles commented: "Is it not quite revealing that the BBC’s Countryfile programme has become so tremendously popular? Ever since they moved it to its prime-time slot on a Sunday night, it has become one of their most successful television programmes, with over seven million viewers a week. There is evidently a thirst for the countryside and for the culture it represents."
Bill Lyons, Countryfile’s Executive Editor, says: “Farming has shaped the landscape and identity of modern Britain and rural business contributes massively to the UK economy, but changing times throw up challenging questions. Through the work of his many rural initiatives and his Prince’s Countryside Fund, The Prince of Wales deals at first hand with many of the issues on Countryfile's agenda. As we celebrate our 25th year, we look forward to this special edition of Countryfile, which will bring the Prince's passion and perspective to this hugely popular programme.”
Danny Cohen, Controller of BBC One, says: "It’s wonderful to have Prince Charles as guest editor of Countryfile. It’ll be a very special programme for BBC One and I look forward to it."
The edition of Countryfile with The Prince of Wales as guest editor will air on BBC One and BBC One HD in March.
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