Next Episode of Countryfile is
Season 29 / Episode 39 and airs on 24 September 2017 19:00
The people, places and stories making news in the British countryside.
Ellie looks back at some of the shows encounters with Winter Wildlife.
The show head's to Herefordshire, here Matt meets a family who are turning oilseed rape into oil. Jean Christophe-Novelli reveals how he uses the product. Ellie heads to Heartwood Forest to see how the work on the area is going. Tom wants to know if bus routes will ever return to some of the most isolated areas of the countryside. Tony Singh reveals what the British countryside means to him. Adam revisits the winner of 2015's Countryfile Farming Hero and launches this year's competition as well.
Matt gives some trees a health check. Ellie looks at a renowned bird breeding program. Josh Widdicombe relives his youth at a Welsh campsite. Adam Henson revisits a 2015 finalist of the Food and Farming Awards, Cameron Hendry. Tom investigates a new law which has been introduced to try and save neglected and abandoned horses.
Ellie and Matt head to North Devon, a place which is busy but only when it's tourist season. Sarah Story reveals her favourite bit of the countryside. Adam looks at a new piece of technology which is extending growing season. Tom invesitgates the ban on catching bass.
Matt visits the unlikely stars of the documentary 'Addicted to Sheep'. Ellie looks at winter migration. John goes for a woodland walk in Cumbria with some wolves. Sean tries winter cod fishing. Adam heads to Orkney looking at why seaweed-eating sheep are under threat.
Matt and Ellie are in Tyne and Wear. Matt visits a country park. Ellie heads down the coast near Sunderland to look at the restoration of a lighthouse.
Matt and Ellie are in Norfolk. Matt learns about how to become a gamekeeper, he also sees how to butcher venison and is prepared a stew. Ellie tells the story of the return of cranes to Norfolk. Adam heads to the Stirling bull sales. Nicola Adams reveals what her favourite place is in the British countryside.
Matt and Ellie are in Staffordshire. Matt visits a school that focuses on farming and agriculture. Ellie meets a couple with their very own nature reserve. Adam looks at eggs. Tom investigates a tree disease called Ash Dieback.
Matt Baker and Shauna Lowry are near Colchester on the Essex coast. Matt takes a trip to Mersea Island to Richard Haward, a oyster fisherman. Elsewhere Shauna returns to the River Colne, where five years ago the show saw the start of a big project to return water voles to the wild.
John Craven discovers the Rathlin Island's growing kelp industry. Anita Rani meets farmer who has diversified in an imaginative way.
Adam Henson visits Aberystwyth to meet the youngster working towards a career in farming. He will also explore what life is like being a young farmer today.
Matt Baker and Ellie Harrison explore Ashdown Forest.
The team explore the three counties of Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire. Matt Baker meets some of the local crafts people keeping rural skills alive - heritage builders, a weathervane maker and a stained glass artist. Ellie Harrison is visiting a farm where the owners are potty about poultry, breeding turkeys for their eggs rather than meat. She's also exploring the ultimate wildlife garden. Sean Fletcher is discovering the area's links with the humble daffodil. And Adam Henson is meeting the three-year-old girl already getting to grips with lambing. Hundreds of years after becoming extinct, beavers are back on mainland Britain. Charlotte Smith investigates why some people are trying to save them, while others want them culled.
John Craven takes to Northumberland's roads in a vintage Volvo, much like the car used to ferry the artist L S Lowry around on his visits to the area. To mark the 40th anniversary of Lowry's death, John follows in the artist's footsteps, accompanied by Simon Marshall, who used to drive Lowry to scenic spots for him to paint. Ellie Harrison is on the moors learning that the best ways to conserve vital moorland is to burn it. She joins the team behind an innovative scheme to train people how to cope with wildfires and how controlled burning can benefit wildlife. Domestic violence can be a problem anywhere, but as Charlotte Smith discovers, when you live in an isolated rural area, finding the support you need to escape an abusive situation can be tough. Plus the second of the Farming Hero nominees, Julia Evans, who opened a care farm in Worcestershire.
To mark 400 years since Shakespeare's death, Countryfile travel the length and breadth of the country in search of the landscapes that inspired him. Ellie Harrison is in Warwickshire, rediscovering the ancient Forest of Arden and looking at Shakespeare's intimate knowledge of plants. Matt Baker visits the Clydach Gorge, a magical hidden valley on the edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park, where local legend says Shakespeare wrote A Midsummer Night's Dream. Meanwhile, John Craven is joined by Dame Judi Dench, one of Britain's best-loved Shakespearian actors. Together, they follow in the footsteps of Shakespeare and his players to Fordwich in Kent, where they performed for the town in 1605. Joe Crowley visits the Minack Theatre in Cornwall to see how Shakespeare has had a dramatic effect on our landscape. And Adam looks at Shakespeare's relationship with the lucrative wool trade and takes sheep back to the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon for the first time in over a century.
Ellie Harrison visits the South Haven Peninsula in Dorset to tell the story of conservation's unsung hero Captain Cyril Diver. Diver was a champion of conservation and broke new ground in the 1930s, surveying the whole ecosystem of the peninsula. Ellie spends the day with the National Trust's ecologist Michelle Brown to find out what the Trust have been doing 80 years on from Diver's survey and what the future holds for this diverse landscape. Ellie also talks about her passion and love for nature and conservation, and she takes a look back through the Countryfile archives to see how conservation projects are making a difference across the country.
Matt Baker explores the Dartington estate in south Devon to discover the innovative history of the place, meet the farmers who are turning their goat's milk into ice cream and find out about the vertical farming taking root in the grounds. Anita Rani sees how to make the softest of sheepskin and meets the woman who has turned her cottage industry into a thriving business selling natural, handmade soap, and Adam Henson looks at the livestock being bred specifically for conservation. The programme also visits the Food and Farming Awards to reveal this year's Countryfile Farming Hero. Plus there is a look at European turtle doves - they are in decline, but in one country it is legal to hunt them as they migrate back to their European breeding grounds. Tom Heap travels to Malta to investigate a tradition causing controversy across the continent.
This special programme travels the length and breadth of the country to provide a snapshot of spring, from shoreline and shingle to farmland and fell, we discover signs of new life as the season unfurls. Including dolphins in Cardigan Bay, one of the UK's last remaining hay meadows, a Roman fort in Alderney, the largest vegetated shingle spit in Europe and a look at the start of the shellfish season.
From carrots to cauliflower, peas to parsnips we are a nation of vegetable lovers. To mark National Vegetarian Week, Countryfile is taking a look at all things veggie. Matt Baker is at the heart of the Jersey Royal Potato Harvest. Ellie Harrison gets artistic with her vegetables to create a landscape photograph with a difference. Naomi Wilkinson tastes the delights of Indian vegetarian cooking. Champion free runner and vegan Tim Shieff goes head to head with sheep farmer Gareth Wyn Jones to debate the pros and cons of veganism. Adam Henson looks into the future of farming when he visits an urban farm built in tunnels 33 metres below the streets of London. And Tom Heap investigates the threats facing vegetable producers and finds out why many feel that the days of British veg are numbered.
Countryfile is in Snowdonia. John Craven races a hill runner to the summit of Snowdon and meets the volunteers protecting the area's osprey. Anita Rani dons her wetsuit to discover that you don't need to be near the sea to go surfing. Joe Crowley meets the artist whose work is taking centre stage in this landscape. And it's all going down on Adam Henson's farm as spring takes hold. The EU referendum is arguably the biggest decision facing our countryside for decades. Tom Heap meets up with the leading figures from both sides of the argument and asks the prime minister and Boris Johnson why rural Britain should vote with them.
To celebrate British Flowers Week, Charlotte Smith and Anita Rani look at the resurgence of British flowers. Charlotte meets a Hampshire farmer who has diversified into British blooms, with as many acres given over to flowers as to food. Charlotte is intoxicated by their fragrance and finds out what it is about the smell of flowers we find so bewitching. Anita Rani visits Covent Garden Flower Market, where she meets the traders doing a roaring trade in roses. Meanwhile, Matt Baker takes to the old pack horse trails through the New Forest and hears how the ponies were used by smugglers to ply their illicit trade. He also visits a farm where water buffalo are the main livestock. Adam Henson gets stuck in with the sheep shearing and hears from farmers about the prices they get for their wool. Tom Heap investigates why areas set up by the government to protect our seas are being branded by some scientists as worse than useless.
Countryfile is in the East Midlands to find out about the region's rural past. Matt Baker takes to the Trent in a kayak and finds out about the effort to clean up the river. He also visits Calverton Fish Farm in Nottinghamshire, where the team teach stocked fish how to be 'wild' in special tanks that force the fish to swim against an artificial current for food. Helen Skelton is in Rutland to meet master miller Nigel Moon. Nigel takes her on as apprentice for the day in his traditional windmill, one of the last in the region. Adam Henson is at the biggest agricultural show in the South West, The Royal Bath and West. John Craven launches 2016's photographic competition, with its theme From Dawn till Dusk. Joining John on the judging team are Dragons' Den's Deborah Meaden, comedian Rhona Cameron and wildlife cameraman Simon King. Matt Baker also reveals the total raised by sales of 2015's calendar. Tom Heap discovers how a global health crisis is impacting the battle against Bovine TB.
This episode comes from Pembrokeshire. John Craven takes to the water to find out about the area's boating heritage, painting boats and learning sea shanties along the way. Helen Skelton is foraging on Freshwater West beach and cooking up a seaweed feast. She also meets the team building the ultimate ecohouse using locally sourced materials. Sanjida O'Connell is on Skomer helping to count the Manx shearwaters who call this island home.
And Adam Henson is in Cornwall making a special delivery of rare-breed cattle to the Heligan estate, while Tom Heap is looking at what is being done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions on farms after claims that agriculture produces larger quantities of gases than traffic.
It's tennis season and Countryfile is visiting Kent, where Matt Baker will be finding out about Wimbledon strawberries and getting to grips with the harvest.
Naomi Wilkinson is meeting the couple who turned their love of wildlife into an animal rescue centre, looking after everything from hedgehogs to flocks of buzzards. In the shadow of the white cliffs of Dover she'll also be finding out about the long history of channel swimming and donning her wetsuit to try out the ultimate wild swim.
John Craven meets a farmer who is growing Chinese vegetables and produce, from pak choi to chrysanthemums, and Adam Henson is at the Royal Three Counties show, meeting youngsters with the farming bug. Plus Tom Heap investigates calls to ban live plant imports and asks what dangers could be hiding in the soil that comes into the country with them.
The Countryfile team explores meadows, from the wildlife that makes the meadow its home to the plants that thrive there. Matt Baker discovers the art of scything with Britain's reigning female scything champion, and also makes hay whilst the sun shines.
Naomi Wilkinson meets an artist whose passion for meadows echoes through her vibrant paintings. She explores the RSPB site encouraging birds, bees, bugs and butterflies by introducing a meadow habitat. And she finds out about the rise in popularity of burial meadows.
John Craven discovers the folklore behind meadow plants and how their healing properties are being used in modern medicine. And Adam Henson is on his farm looking at his own meadows and grasslands. Tom Heap investigates the lack of affordable housing in Britain's rural areas and asks why we're still not getting it right.
The team visit Cumbria, where Matt Baker looks at the places which inspired the work of Beatrix Potter, marking the 150th anniversary of the writer's birth. Helen Skelton meets a couple who run their farm using horses and steam power, and also finds out about traditional Lakeland sports, including Cumberland wrestling. Naomi Wilkinson meets an artist who captures the inspirational women of the Cumbrian countryside, Adam Henson visits a Capability Brown landscape being restored with heavy horses, and Tom Heap investigates why there are calls across the UK and Europe to ban glyphosate, the world's most used herbicide.
Summer has arrived, and the landscape is in full bloom - it is the perfect time to get out and enjoy the countryside. And in a special programme, Countryfile are cooling down by the water's edge in celebration of the Great British summer. Matt travels along the coastline of south Wales with Sam Evans and Shauna Guinn, known as the first ladies of barbeque, sourcing the best cuts of meat for their summer beach party. Meanwhile, Naomi Wilkinson enjoys 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 a feeding frenzy of bats. 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 gets on his bike and heads off the beaten track along the beautiful Pembrokeshire coastline to enjoy a spot of wild camping. And Adam is in Northern Ireland, where summer for one farmer means taking to the water with his cattle.
Countryfile is on the tiny Scottish island of Kerrera. Sitting just half a kilometre from the mainland but a world away from the hustle and bustle, Kerrera is the archetypal Scottish Island. There are rugged cliffs, wide-open beaches and remote farmsteads. Anita spends a day getting to know the locals and getting under the skin of island life. She joins postmaster Gill Vollum as she goes about her daily round - not easy when there's only one half-finished road on the island. She helps shepherd Sheila McGregor round up her sheep and hears that all the farms on Kerrera are run by women. And she stops for a welcome cup of tea at the tea room that serves as the community hub. Anita meets owners Aideen Gallagher and Martin Shields who quit busy jobs on the mainland and finds out what living the island dream is like for them.
2016 is the 60th anniversary of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards scheme, and to mark the occasion Countryfile heads to the wilds of the west Highlands of Scotland. Matt joins the intrepid team mid-way through their five-day Diamond Challenge. They have already scaled Ben Nevis, and when Matt meets them they are canoeing the Great Glen all the way to Inverness. Matt also meets the scientist who has made it her mission to fight the menace of Scotland's infamous midges. Sean meets mountaineer Hamish Macinnes, whose inventions, including his famous stretcher, have saved hundreds of lives.
Naomi explores Glencoe's 'Atlantic woodland' - a rich and rare habitat, where she gets a close look at the amazingly intricate lichens and mosses that carpet the woodland. Helen is in the Peak District with a party of schoolchildren undertaking their bronze Duke of Edinburgh, and she walks a stretch of Kinder Scout with HRH Prince Edward, himself a Gold Award holder and trustee of the scheme.
And as the red grouse shooting season gets underway, Charlotte Smith meets the supporters and critics of one of Britain's most controversial country pursuits.
The first ever Countryfile Live took place in the magnificent grounds of Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire - four days in the sunshine celebrating the best of the British Countryside. Matt kicks the programme off with a whistlestop tour of the show, mixing and mingling with exhibitors and visitors, and he calls in at the Craven Arms, Countryfile Live's very own pub.
Ellie goes behind the scenes to see what goes into setting up a show on this scale, and she also grabs a quick chat with the Duke of Marlborough, Blenheim's owner, to find out what it's like having such a big show in your garden.
Anita steps away from the showground to get up close to some truly magnificent oak trees, many of them more than a thousand years old. John takes to the water to see how ducks are helping restore Blenheim's beautiful ornamental lakes, while Tom and Adam go head to head at the timbers sports arena in a test of strength and speed.
And Charlotte Smith looks at what might happen to British foods protected under EU law and catches up with some producers who are worried they will lose a vital protection and others who see a real opportunity.
Countryfile has been given access to an excavation at the Stonehenge World Heritage site, and Joe Crowley meets the team who have discovered strange items buried in the soil at Durrington Walls, not far from the famous stones of Stonehenge. Joe meets archaeologist Julian Richards, a world authority on the stones, and then Hugh Morrison, a tenant farmer at Stonehenge, to see just what sort of problem he faces farming on a World Heritage Site. Anita finds out how Neolithic farmers lived by visiting reconstructions of the types of houses they lived in, and she learns to bake bread the Neolithic way. She also meets the modern-day farmer who has built a Stone Age longbarrow on his land where people can inter the ashes of loved ones. John is joined by fellow judges Deborah Meaden and Simon King to select the final 12 pictures in the Countryfile Photographic Competition, and in a nod to the competition's theme, we spend a day with Adam seeing what happens on his farm 'From Dawn til Dusk'.
It is harvest time, and the countryside is buzzing with activity. The Countryfile team are getting stuck in as crops are brought in across the country. Matt Baker visits the Gaddesden Estate to discover how the harvest here has changed over the years. Anita Rani picks peppermint and concocts cocktails. John Craven is meeting a group of 'nutters' to gather in the cobnut harvest ready for a nutty feast. Joe Crowley investigates the farm brands on sale in supermarkets and asks when is a farm not a farm. Countryfile also plays host to the fortieth anniversary of One Man and His Dog, as England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland send their best shepherds and their dogs to compete for the trophy, and Adam has been meeting the teams to see how they are preparing. This week he is travelling to Wales and Ireland to meet the competitors and their dogs hoping to be crowned champions.
Anita Rani explores Anglesey. She navigates the notorious Menai Strait and meets the fisherman who bought an island. She also gets up close with a wild, bloodsucking creature. Adam Henson has been meeting the teams preparing for the 40th-anniversary edition of One Man and His Dog. The best shepherds and their canine companions from England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland will be competing, all hoping to be crowned champions. This week he catches up with the English and Scottish contenders. Matt Baker launches this year's Countryfile Ramble for BBC Children in Need. Taking place over one weekend in October, the event aims to cover the countryside in Countryfile viewers, all rambling across rural Britain to raise vital funds for the charity. Matt and his fellow presenters John Craven, Anita Rani, Ellie Harrison and Adam Henson will be leading the way on rambles of their own, where they will be joined by youngsters who have benefited from Children in Need funding.
Countryfile marks the 100th anniversary of Roald Dahl's birth by discovering his passion for the great outdoors and how it inspired his writing. John Craven explores Great Missenden, the village where Dahl lived for much of his life. He meets the children's author Piers Torday, who is inspired by both the countryside and by Dahl himself. There is also a look back through the Countryfile archive to the times we have met others inspired by the beautiful countryside, from underwater painters to graffiti artists. Matt Baker has more news on how viewers can take part in the Countryfile Ramble for BBC Children in Need. Last year, thousands of Countryfile viewers took part, helping to raise over ú850,000 and transforming the lives of some of Britain's most disadvantaged youngsters. With a fortnight to go until the 40th-anniversary edition of the legendary One Man and His Dog sheepdog trialling competition, Adam Henson meets the English and Scottish teams hoping to win the trophy.
Matt Baker and Anita Rani preside over proceedings as the best shepherds and their dogs from England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland battle it out for the trophy. While Matt takes to the commentary box, Anita explores the history of the estate and catches up with the friends and family of the competitors.
Anita Rani travels to Surrey to explore the revival of interest in growing hops there. She meets the brewers bringing back the county's fabled white bine hop, helps to get the hop harvest in and gets to sample an unusual brew made with fresh undried hops. She also joins Surrey Wildlife Trust, who are carrying out a survey of small mammals to see how effective wildlife corridors are. Adam Henson is hoping for the right conditions to get the last of his wheat harvest in, and John announces which photograph the public voted winner in the Countryfile Photographic Competition. Tom Heap is on the trail of one of the UK's most loved animals, the red squirrel, and finds out what can be done to halt its decline.
The team look at how rivers and waterways have shaped our landscape. Matt Baker is on the Thames Estuary to meet a writer who draws inspiration from the estuary and its people. He also meets the Port Authority staff who oversee some 30,000 annual ship movements, jumps on the foot ferry that once would have brought livestock into the city and meets an artist making beautiful things from the flotsam brought in on the tide. Sean Fletcher is just a few miles from Matt, finding out what it takes to turn a landfill site into a thriving nature reserve. And Naomi Wilkinson is in Devon at the beautiful Lydford Gorge, meeting a photographer captivated by its waterfall and whose pictures have become an internet sensation. Naomi then takes to the oldest shipping canal in Britain on a paddleboard! Meanwhile, Adam visits Widecombe Fair in Devon - one of the country's last traditional country fairs. And with the badger cull once again well underway, Tom Heap explores the science around bovine TB.
Matt and Anita explore the Isle of Wight. Matt dons a harness and abseils down the walls of Carisbrooke Castle to help root out the overgrown ivy. He then heads to the castle's well, the deepest on the island, to meet Jack and Jill - the Carisbrooke donkeys. Donkeys have been used to draw water from the well for centuries, but when Jack refuses to budge, Matt has no option but to do it himself.
Anita has her hands full on Ventnor Downs. It's the day of the annual feral goat round-up, and Anita is joining the human chain of volunteers trying to catch the animals. She also visits the vineyard where the owner is growing red grapes - only possible because of the island's mild climate.
That mild climate has also made the Isle of Wight a great place for exotic plants. Naomi is at Ventor Botanic Gardens, where the backdrop is more like southern Europe than southern England.
Adam meets the commercial deer owner looking to genetics to breed the best deer he can and, as supermarkets and catering companies pledge to put an end to eggs from caged chickens, Tom Heap asks if this victory for animal welfare is all it's cracked up to be.
To celebrate nature's final flourish before the slow descent into winter, the team pulls on its wellies, kicks through the crisp leaves and explores the fruits of our forests.
Anita heads to Somerset for a rare autumnal sight - walnut woodland with laden branches. We meet walnut farmer Roger Saul as he reaps one of Somerset's newest crops, borrowing technology from one of its oldest.
Matt is in the wilds of East Sussex to meet Nick Weston, a writer, woodsman and chef who spent six months living off-grid in a tree house built from wood and recycled materials.
Tim Shepherd is a botanist who specialises in timelapse filming. We gather young fungi on deadwood from Tim's local woodland to take back to his studio to film them growing.
We join Adam as he delivers some of his pigs to a Gloucestershire farmer using this traditional way of animal and woodland management.
John investigates the hibernation of dormice on the Isle of Wight.
Matt Baker, John Craven, Anita Rani, Ellie Harrison and Adam Henson take on the Countryfile Ramble for BBC Children in Need.
Heading to all corners of the UK, the presenters are joined by members of the public as well as children and young people who have benefited from the charity. Thousands of viewers also join the call and head out in support of the cause.
John heads to the coast and Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland with 16 year-old Zahra, who has arthritis. Anita takes to the hills of Wales's Sugar Loaf Mountain in the Brecon Beacon's with 15 year-old Olivia, who has Down's Syndrome, Ellie visits Holyrood Park in Edinburgh with young people from the Jeely Piece Club.
Adam walks through Alice Holts Forest in Surrey with the Shilston family, and Matt takes on an epic challenge in the hills of the Lake District with 15 year-old double amputee Levana.
Helen Skelton is on a cycle ride across northern France to commemorate 100 years since the Battle of the Somme. She finds out about the brave cycling battalions that travelled from many parts of rural Britain, to fight there. Helen also meets fellow riders to hear their personal reasons for taking on the cycling challenge. Plus a look back through the Countryfile archives to the times Britain's countryside connections to war and the role of nature in remembrance and rehabilitation were explored. John Craven reveals the role of the humble tractor in the development of the tank, Ellie Harrison experiences the tranquillity of the National Memorial Arboretum and Jules Hudson witnesses the impact of the outdoors on one soldier's recovery from war.
Countryfile visits West Yorkshire, where Matt Baker meets the youngsters who have become RSPB rangers. Anita Rani explores Bronte country and meets an author who literally immerses himself in the landscape. Anita also finds out about an award-winning halloumi cheese producer from Syria. Naomi Wilkinson discovers the challenges facing the fire brigade at Ogden Water, and Adam raises a glass to English wine. Tom Heap investigates claims that sheep farming could become impossible in some parts of Britain within just a few years.
The Countryfile team explores the Brecon Beacons. Matt Baker discovers geocaching, a treasure hunt with a modern twist, and meets an artist whose canvas is the night sky. Helen Skelton is sheep trekking across the landscape and taking part in a rather muddy fish rescue. Sean Fletcher jumps on his bike to meet the farmers who have taken diversification to the extreme, and Adam Henson finds out about a cancer cure for man's best friend. Tom Heap asks how safe horses and riders really are on country roads and if more should be done to protect them.
John, Anita and Ellie are in Lincolnshire, where it's all go in the vast fields of winter veg. John visits a farm where they are harvesting tonnes of caulis and sprouts in readiness for Christmas, and he visits the trial plots where new types of vegetable are being developed, including the kalette, a cross between kale and a brussels sprout. Anita sees how robot technology designed to pull up weeds could cut down on herbicides and even cut down on human labour. Ellie visits the ancient woodland at the edge of an old RAF base where bats have set up home in old wartime buildings, and she discovers that it's not just bats hibernating there - butterflies do it too. Adam talks about his lifelong passion for ducks - one of his favourite farmyard animals. Tom Heap finds out why many of our rivers and waterways are suffering and what farmers can do to help bring them back to life.
Helen, Joe and Sean explore the varied landscapes of Aberdeenshire. From the solitude of the rugged north coast to the deep dark forests where wildcats dwell, it's a surprising county. Helen discovers the only village on mainland Britain where cars can't go. She also visits an open-air aquarium where they hand feed the fish, and she makes lino prints with an artist who takes inspiration from this remote coastline. Joe looks at a project mapping the diminishing wildcat population. Sean visits a turkey farm where the guard dogs are alpacas, and Adam catches up with One Man and His Dog winner Dick Roper. Tom Heap investigates why so many council farms are disappearing from the landscape.
Countryfile celebrates Christmas in style at Bamburgh Castle on the wild and beautiful Northumbrian coast. Anita goes on a festive forage with the jewellery maker who turns natural materials into stunning decorations. Anita also sees what it takes to make an award-winning Christmas pudding. John is on Lindisfarne discovering what the first Christmases in these islands would have been like, before meeting the makers of mead. Ellie gives some hints and tips on how to look after wildlife when the temperature drops. Adam is with the hill shepherd watching her flocks, and Tom wonders if a lack of bell ringers could cause some churches to fall silent this Christmas.
Ellie Harrison visits Thirsk in Yorkshire to celebrate the centenary of vet Alf White, known to the world as James Herriot. Ellie meets his daughter and his son, as well as the vets running his practice today. She learns of the landscapes and people that inspired James Herriot's books and finds out what life was really like for a rural vet. She also meets up with actor Christopher Timothy, who portrayed James Herriot in the television series All Creatures Great and Small. Plus a look back through the Countryfile archive to rediscover the people who dedicate their time and efforts to helping animals, including the time when John met the team giving hedgehogs a helping hand through Christmas and the winter months, the dramatic moment when Joe assisted a stag caught up in fencing, and when Ellie met the woman who paints horses to help others understand them.
Anita Rani travels to one of her favourite places in the British countryside, Malham Cove in the Yorkshire Dales. She learns more about this unique landscape and how it was formed thousands of years ago. She meets an artist whose passion, like her mother's and grandmother's before, is painting nearby Gordale Scar. In the village of Malham, Anita catches up with the latest incumbent of the local smithy, who used to be a tax accountant. Anita has been to Malham Cove many times but she's never climbed the walls of this famous limestone amphitheatre. She also looks back through the archives as we re-visit some famous faces who shared with us places in the British countryside that were particularly special to them. Like the time comedian Ed Byrne tried to bag a munro on there Isle of Skye; when England test cricket captain Alistair Cook invited us to the family sheep farm and when Olympic gold winning boxer Nicola Adams took Adam Henson through his paces in her training ground in Leeds.
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