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Country pursuits become a more popular staple on primetime TV

Following the rise of Sunday night successes such as Countryfile, country pursuits on the small screen have been on the rise, paving the way for a new genre of television dubbed ‘slow TV’. Country pursuits and countryside becoming more popular on TV Following the countryside hits the BBC have enjoyed, ITV has been hot on its heels by recently launching two new series based on the outdoors. Fishing Impossible is the first, focusing on one particular country pursuit, while Countrywise: Guide to Britain takes us through what we can discover in the Great British countryside. Fishing Impossible, with its stunning cinematography of British Colombia and the jokey chemistry between the presenters, seeks out to be a Top Gear for fishing. In the beginning episode, the trio of anglers are in Canada, trying to land the biggest catch of salmon, however, they face the threat of nearby grizzly bears. Part travelogue, part fishing adventure, Fishing Impossible hopes to bring the joys of fishing to a mainstream audience. Countrywise follows a road more travelled however, putting its own spin on the successful Countryfile formula. It heads to a number of rural locations, revealing the joys of country life. In one segment, Ben Fogle tours the Isles of Scilly, while Victoria Pendleton rides along the sands of Holkham with the Queen’s Household Cavalry. With so much of the television schedules being taken up by bad news and conflict, the networks have cottoned on to the fact that people are seeking a little escapism on their screens. This new genre of rural television offers that escapism, yet it is also attainable, with many of the locations found on the viewer’s doorstep. As many as 9.6 million people tune in every week to watch Countryfile and fall in love with the secrets of the Great British countryside. If you’ve been inspired to don your wellies by this wealth of new rural TV shows, we’ve got a great range of country products and gifts for you, from leather gunslips to shooting accessories. Image: Iain Watson, available under Creative Commons