Ben Fogle, adventurer and broadcaster, combines travelogue with a sprinkling of Scottish Christian history as he returns to the Hebrides
Ben Fogle shot to TV celebrity over 20 years ago when he took part in a reality programme called Castaway 2000 – he was one of a group stranded on the remote Scottish island of Taransay, and participants had to call on their team spirit and sharpen their survival skills. Fogle, then picture editor at Tatler, was a notable figure there (indeed he turned out to be the only memorable thing about it) because of his unstoppable enthusiasm and cheerfulness. Always ready to get his boots on and muck in, that attractive characteristic has been the mainstay of his successful career in television broadcasting ever since.
In the four-part series Scotland’s Sacred Islands (BBC Scotland, thereafter on BBC iPlayer), he’s back in the Hebrides visiting 20 islands to explore their religious history and sacred places. He is not quite following in the footsteps (or the backwash) of St Columba and the Irish monks who brought Christianity to the Scottish isles in the sixth century – but they are certainly there in the background.