Tom Wright, Reporter
Monday, July 15, 2013
TOP Gear will show off the sights of Weston after filming parts of its new series in a giant red London bus on the seafront.
Presenter James May visited the town on Friday in the new-style bus, filming scenes for the hugely-popular BBC Two motoring show.
Crowds gathered to watch the 50-year-old film the final shots outside Stones café in Knightstone Causeway, near Marine Lake.
The Mercury understands the Top Gear crew had also been filming in Banwell and Cheddar.
Mr May said: “We have been down here for two days and it’s been fantastic.
“We’ve had lovely weather down here in particular and the people have been very nice.”
The episode will feature in a special Best of British episode and is set to be on our screens in ‘two or three weeks’ time.
Mr May said he had thoroughly enjoyed his brief trip to Weston, a part of the world which he regards as ‘home’.
He said: “I’m very pleased to come to Weston. I think my mother and father got engaged here or at least came here on holiday an awful lot.
“All my family are from Bristol and the Avon area. I feel like I’m at home in a way when I’m coming to the West Country even though I only lived here for a year, but my grandparents and other family are from here.”
He stopped to chat and pose in photos for dozens of fans who were taken by surprise by his arrival, before he headed back to his hotel ahead of trips to France and Russia this week.
Fellow presenters Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond did not join him by the seaside, with Mr May telling the Mercury they were filming scenes in Herefordshire and the north of England.
The show attracts about five million viewers every week on a Sunday evening and Mr May said he felt the big London bus and Weston was truly showing off how great Britain is.
Captain Slow, as he is affectionately called on the show, said: “It’s been a bit different driving around in a bus (rather than an expensive supercar).
“I have done a few things like buses and lorries before and you have to remember it’s a bit wider.
“The bus is a totally British product and I don’t think there’s a single part of it that’s made elsewhere. Everything from the floor to the windows is made in this country.”
Marcus Dudd, whose father Jonathan owns Stones café, said the crew had contacted them two days before to say he may be coming.
He said it was great to have them film outside, even if their arrival had been a bit later than expected.