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British reality show ‘I’m A Celebrity’ to be filmed within haunted castle ruins in the UK countryside


Gwrych Castle by Ognyan Petrov via Wikimedia Commons CC

The popular British reality show, I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! is to relocate to the haunted ruins of one of Britain’s remote castles.

First airing in 2002, I’m A Celebrity featured a number of well known faces who endure gruelling challenges in the Australian jungle.

However, due to the ongoing global health emergency and the travel & quarantine restrictions that go with it, ITV have been forced to re-think the location for the upcoming 2020 series.

It was announced last week that the show will now be filmed within the setting of Castle ruins in the UK countryside, with the winner of the 2020 series being crowned King or Queen of the castle.

Richard Cowles, Director of Entertainment at ITV Studios said: “We pulled out all the stops to try and make the series happen in Australia.  Unfortunately, despite us looking at many different contingencies, it became apparent that it just wasn’t possible for us to travel and make the show there.

However, we are all really excited about a UK version of I’m A Celebrity.  While it will certainly be different producing the show from the UK, the same tone and feel will remain.”

As for the shows setting – the 200 year old, haunted Grade l listed Gwrych Castle in Conwy, North Wales, is looking likely to be the firm favourite.

The castles construction began in 1810 by Lloyd Hesketh Bamford Hesketh and was completed four decades later, before being passed on to the Earls of Dundonald through the marriage of Lloyd Hesketh’s daughter – Winifred.

Today, Gwrych Castle is surrounding by 250 acres of parkland and beautiful historic gardens with views of the Irish Sea.

One of the Castles resident ghost’s is said to be the angry spirit of The Countess of Dundonald ‘Winifred Cochrane‘ who passed away in 1924, she reportedly roams the castle ruins dressed in white and this would certainly make for spooktacular TV by giving the celebrities a bit of a freight as opposed to the usual critters and snakes of the Australian bush.

Five Scottish castles also rumoured to be ideal locations for the UK’s first ever series are Eilean Donan Castle in Inverness-shire. This iconic, remote castle was first constructed in the 13th century and was built to protect against the invasion of Vikings.

Aberdour Castle in Fife is a fortified 13th century estate, with a garden large enough for the campsite and surrounded by high walls to provide enough privacy for filming.

Meanwhile in Stirlingshire, Doune Castle is 13th century building with its grounds consisting of a large grassed medieval courtyard and previously featured in numerous TV and film productions, including Game of Thrones and Monty python and the holy grail.

Caerlaverock Castle in Dumfries and Galloway was also built in the 13th century and is rather unusually triangular in shape. It is located on Scotland’s south coast, completely surrounded by a moat which could be perfect for some of the celebs trials.

One final rumoured location is Blackness Castle near Falkir. Built in the 15th century, this castle provided the setting for the filming of Mary Queen of Scots.

Celebrities rumoured to grace our screens in this years UK series are Strictly Come Dancing’s AJ Pritchard, Opera singer Katherine Jenkins, footballing legend Eric Cantona and TV host Vernon Kay.

About author

Susan is an Actress, Vocalist, Voice-over artist and Writer. She graduated from the University of Salford with a BA (HONS) Music Degree and spent some time travelling around Europe with various choirs, during which time she also performed in the opening ceremony of the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games before pursuing her acting and writing career.