Sunday 26 March 2017

Remote Highland forest to host year-long wilderness survival show

Year Zero will follow a group of contestants trying to survive in Ardnamurchan
Year Zero will follow a group of contestants trying to survive in Ardnamurchan

A new reality TV show challenging contestants to create a community in the wilderness is set to be filmed in Scotland.

Year Zero will follow 24 contestants trying to survive in a forest for a year using only natural resources.

A bid by production company KEO Films, commissioned by Channel Four, to shoot the show at Ardnamurchan in Lochaber had faced objections from the local community.

Objectors called on the local authority to reject the plans - which involved building homes for contestants in a forest on the Ardnamurchan Estate, installing Portacabins for production crew and using generators for filming - due to concerns including the impact on wildlife and possible pollution.

But KEO Films said the programme would help boost the local economy and planning officials recommended approval.

Highland Council's planning committee has now unanimously approved the proposals.

Councillor Thomas MacLennan said he hopes the new show will boost tourism.

He said: "I'm reassured that the development has a limited life expectancy and sufficient conditions are in place to restore the area after the programme's conclusion.

"It will bring some jobs and hopefully a tourism boost to a remote and economically fragile area of Lochaber, and I am content that the conclusion to this planning application is what the silent majority in the Acharacle area want."

Scotland was used as the location for a previous show following the attempts of a group of people to set up home on a remote island.

Castaway 2000 followed a year-long effort by 36 men, women and children building a community on Taransay, in the Western Isles, and launched the career of adventurer Ben Fogle.

Press Association

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