2016 brings national TV spotlight to Honister

Honister Slate Mine gets the New Year underway with two major appearances on primetime TV, following visits by a couple of very famous faces.

Politician turned broadcaster Michael Portillo visited Honister last Spring, as part of a trip through the Lake District for the new series of BBC2’s Great Railway Journeys. As England’s last working slate mine, Honister is an important heritage site and Co-owner Joe Weir took his special guest underground to see the modern-day mining process. He was also shown an original electric train used by miners in days gone by and followed in the footsteps of Victorian miners on their way to work. The programme, which celebrates the country’s railways, will be transmitted tonight Monday 4 January 2016 at 6.30pm on BBC 2.

Also starting tonight is a new weekly ITV series called Griff’s Great Britain, presented by Griff Rhys Jones. One of the eight programmes to come later in the series will focus on the Lake District, with Griff taking on the daunting challenge of ‘skywalking’ across the so-called ‘Infiniti Bridge’ at Honister – thought to be Britain’s longest Burma bridge, suspended more than 2,000 feet above the valley floor. He will also be exploring the terrain in a variety of other ways, such as driving across Wrynose pass in a vintage car and taking to the waters of Derwentwater in a canoe.

Joe Weir, Co-owner of Honister Slate Mine, says “We’re getting used to welcoming famous faces to Honister and it’s great that TV documentary crews are so keen to come and film here. We had great fun with both Michael Portillo and Griff Rhys Jones, who had already filmed down the mine a few years ago. Michael took a real interest in what we do and Griff was definitely up for the challenge of Skywalking!

He adds, “With some other TV programmes already in the pipeline for 2016, it’s fantastic to see interest in the iconic Lake District landscape still continues to grow. Honister really is becoming the ultimate filming location.


Notes to Editors:

Hi res images attached: ITV crew film Griff Rhys Jones ‘skywalking’ across the Infiniti bridge at Honister.

Additional images available. For more information, please contact: Heather Sewell, hsewell@cumbriatourism.org / 01539 825002 / 07795 487003

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