A special edition of Countryfile celebrating the Great British summer. Matt Baker travels along the south Wales coast, while Naomi Wilkinson punts along the River Cam in Cambridge.
Summer has arrived, and the landscape is in full bloom. It's the perfect time to get out and enjoy the countryside in all its glory. And in a special programme, Countryfile are cooling down by the water's edge in celebration of our Great British summer.
Matt is travelling along the coastline of south Wales with Sam Evans and Shauna Guinn, who are known as the first ladies of barbeque, sourcing the best cuts of meat for their summer beach party.
Naomi Wilkinson is enjoying a summer evening punt along the River Cam in Cambridge, where she is joined by Iain Webb from the Wildlife Trust on the lookout for feeding frenzy of bats.
Also in the programme, John Craven is on the river Waveney in Suffolk bringing in the summertime bulrush harvest for the first time in more than 50 years.
Sean Fletcher is getting on his bike and heading off the beaten track along the beautiful Pembrokeshire coastline to enjoy a spot of wild camping.
And Adam is in Northern Ireland, where the summer months for one farmer mean taking to the water with his cattle.
For many people cooling off during the hotter months means heading straight to the coast, but one man is heading in the opposite direction. Iain Cameron is scaling some of the UK’s tallest mountains in search of summer snow. He’s fascinated by the patches of snow left on mountain tops, these vestiges of winter remain throughout the year in the highest and remotest regions of Scotland. We join Iain on the hunt for these snow patches in the Cairngorms National park.
Summer time brings with it blankets of wild flower meadows all across the country. Naomi Wilkinson meets artist Rachel Dein whose aim is to capture those delicate wildflowers in the most concrete of ways. Rachel shows Naomi her technique of plaster-cast tiles that imprint the intricate details of the subtlest flowers. The plants tell a story of a fleeting moment before summer fades, their texture, pattern and delicacy, rendered rich forever in the plaster casting.
Adam’s in Northern Ireland, on one of the UK’s biggest freshwater lakes, Lough Erne. He’s helping stockman, Andrew Gallagher as he moves cattle and sheep, but this is no ordinary job! There’s more than 150 pasture rich islands on this lake and farmers have been taking advantage of them for hundreds of years, moving livestock from island to island. So how will Adam fare shipping livestock across the lake in something called a cot?
It’s harvest time on the River Waveny in Suffolk. This stretch of picturesque river has banks full of bulrushes and has remained untouched for the past fifty years … until now. With the health of the river improving the local crop can finally be harvested. John Craven joins Anna Toulson, from Waveny Rush, to find out how they’re reaping the rewards of this once impassable stretch of water. John gets stuck in and helps Anna cut bulrushes by hand. He then meets up with experienced weaver Millie Baxter back at the workshop, where she teaches John the ancient craft of turning the rushes into beautiful baskets and rugs.
During the warm summer evenings there's nothing quite like a relaxing punt along the river Cam, however Naomi Wilkinson isn’t punting for pleasure, she’s on a bat safari. Naomi joins The Wildlife Trust’s very own batman, Iain Webb to discover why this stretch of the river has become the perfect hunting ground for these elusive creatures and as night falls they position themselves to witness the feeding frenzy armed with just a bat detector and a trusty flash light.
Hangfire Roadtrip - Part 2!
Matt Baker heads to the beach for a great British BBQ with the help of BBQ Specialists Shauna Guinn and Sam Evans. The final leg on the road trip is Jackson’s Bay in Barry, here they teach Matt how to cook up the perfect brisket of beef with a secret recipe handed down through generations. Matt discovers how to perfectly cook the joints of beef using their hand built smoker and grill. They're then joined by their friends and family to sample some of the delights of the summer and celebrate on the beach!
Sean Fletcher is heading to the Gower Peninsula to meet cycling journalist Laurence McJannet who has embarked on a ‘Bikepacking’ adventure. Sean learns that Laurence has been wild camping around the UK , covering more than twelve thousand Kilometres in just nine months on his bike, pitching his tent in Britain’s secret wild places. Sean jumps into the saddle with his own wild camping kit and Laurence takes him on his favourite coastal path before finding the perfect spot to pitch up off the beaten track.
Summer in the Farne islands is a spectacle of wildlife, and for underwater cameraman Ben Burville documenting this flourishing group of islands is a passion. This summer we join him taking a bird’s eye view, albeit from beneath the surface, as he explores the spectacle of the Auk family (Puffins, Razorbills and Guillemots) as they dive and forage for food.
|Executive Producer||William Lyons|
|Series Producer||Joanna Brame|