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A Sense of Spring

Keeley Donovan discovers how just one in 23 people in the UK experiences spring in a truly multisensory way.

And one of the most fragrant and emblematic symbols of spring is under attack - Jules Hudson investigates why native bluebells could be extinct in the space of a generation.

45 minutes

Music Played

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

  • 00:15

    The Chainsmokers

    Roses (feat. ROZES)

  • 00:17

    Empire of The Sun, Various Artists

    Walking On A Dream

The Smell of Spring

The Smell of Spring

We can hear the sounds of spring and see the landscape changing – but does the season have a distinctive smell? John Craven meets biochemist George Dodd, a world authority on the science of smell,  who has been so inspired by the scents of the Highlands in spring that he’s recreated them in a perfume. John accompanies George on a scent trail before joining Adrian Hollister, owner of potentially the most remote perfume studio in the world, to put them in a bottle.

Accessible Nature

Accessible Nature

Access to the countryside for people with disabilities is often difficult if not impossible.  Roy Taylor, an RSPB Area Manager, is trying to change that. In 2013, Roy was diagnosed with motor neurone disease, which left him in a wheelchair.  Not wanting to lose his closeness with nature, Roy set out on a countryside revolution.  His plan was to get rid of obstacles and give greater access to nature. Margherita Taylor meets Roy at Bempton cliffs on the east coast of Yorkshire.  It’s the first reserve to create disabled platforms on the cliffs allowing wheelchair-users to get a clear view of nesting seabirds.

Visit Bempton Cliffs

An Assault on the senses - Synaesthesia

An Assault on the senses - Synaesthesia

Many people can’t get enough of the sights and sounds of springtime, but for the 4% of Brits with the neurological phenomenon called Synaesthesia, the changing of the seasons is experienced in a completely different way.  Keeley Donovan searches out a truly multi-sensory experience with a man who can taste sounds.

Want to take a test to see if you have synaesthesia?

Bluebells

Bluebells

It’s a classic sign of spring; British woodlands awash with a sea of bluebells, but our native bluebell is in trouble and it’s down to a Spanish invader. Jules Hudson visits Duncliffe Wood in Dorset to find out what can be done to protect our native bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta).

Identify the bluebells in your garden

Paul Martin’s Smallholding – Orchards

Paul Martin’s Smallholding – Orchards

Paul’s latest spring project is all about Grow Your Own. Today, he finds out how to get started with Britain’s favourite fruit – Apples. With the help of local Wiltshire fruit farmer Chris Good and Orchard Project Officer, Megan Gimber from People’s Trust for Endangered Species, Paul gets to grips with local heritage varieties and some forgotten national classics. He tries his hand at grafting to create his own orchard.

Learn more about grafting and the importance of orchards as wildlife habitats

Asparagus

Asparagus

Adam Henson helps with the harvest of one of our favourite spring vegetables - asparagus. He starts small-scale with farmer David Brooks. David’s field is amongst the sand dunes at Formby, near Liverpool – an area where asparagus production once thrived. Adam discovers the best way to harvest these fast-growing spears is still to take them out individually by hand. Then, down in the Wye Valley, farmer Chris Chin is taking asparagus to a new level, developing techniques to extend the notoriously short season.

Find out more about Asparagus

New Forest Pony Inspections

New Forest Pony Inspections

The New Forest is a female forest as far as ponies are concerned and that’s because 5,000 mares roam and graze freely in the forest, but for the male colts it’s a different story. Jules Hudson visits Beaulieu Road sales yard on pony inspection day. It’s an important date when the colts are checked for condition and assessed. Just fifteen of the best stallions will be chosen to run with the mares on the forest over the summer.

Find out more about the New Forest pony

Credits

Role Contributor
Presenter John Craven
Presenter Keeley Donovan
Presenter Jules Hudson
Presenter Paul Martin
Presenter Margherita Taylor
Series Producer Andrea Buffery
Editor William Lyons

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