Millions of TV viewers around Great Britain are expected to tune in to images of Fermanagh and Northern Ireland this Sunday, when the brand new period comedy Blandings – featuring Crom Castle – airs on BBC One.
The highly-anticipated six-part series filmed on the shores of Lough Erne will be screened at 6.30 pm on Sunday (13 January) on BBC One. Tourism Ireland will capitalise on the wonderful exposure of Blandings, highlighting the airing of the programme on its website, ireland.com, this weekend. A specially-created page on the site will allow users to click through to special offers, as well as to details about Crom Castle and other locations in Fermanagh which feature in the TV series.
Tourism Minister Arlene Foster added: “It was a real coup for Fermanagh that Crom Castle was selected to star in the new prime-time BBC period comedy ‘Blandings’. I visited the set in April to see at first hand the programme being filmed, and the stately castle along with its spectacular surroundings were the perfect backdrop for the series.
“Programmes such as this boost our growing reputation as a centre of movie-making and TV production excellence. It has also provided us with an amazing opportunity to showcase the fabulous Fermanagh scenery to millions of people and encourage more tourists to come to the area.
“Fermanagh has so much to offer and I’ve no doubt that that once viewers see it on screen they will want to come and experience the stunning surroundings of the location for themselves.”
Tourism Ireland’s extensive social media network in GB will also be used to maximise the popularity of Blandings and to place Fermanagh and Northern Ireland in the spotlight; Tourism Ireland has over 166,000 fans on Facebook in GB and over 6,000 followers on Twitter. As well as interesting snippets and photographs, posts will direct followers to the special Blandings page on ireland.com. Information about the location for the series will be distributed to approximately 300 broadcast, newspaper, magazine and online contacts (including bloggers) throughout GB; this will include details of special offers from accommodation and product providers in the Fermanagh area. Key GB travel and lifestyle media have also been invited by Tourism Ireland to come and visit Crom Castle this spring.
Niall Gibbons, Tourism Ireland’s chief executive, said: “The publicity value of a TV series like Blandings is incalculable; it really is an excellent way of showcasing Fermanagh and Northern Ireland to a huge, nationwide audience of potential holidaymakers across Great Britain. GB is the largest and most important market for tourism to Northern Ireland and we are rolling out a brand new plan in 2013 – called “GB Path to Growth” – to grow the number of GB holidaymakers.
“The G8 summit in June also presents an unprecedented opportunity to showcase Fermanagh and Northern Ireland – not only to world leaders but to the international media. We plan to build on new levels of awareness arising from ni2012 and will be pulling out all the stops this year to ensure that Northern Ireland increases its share of the global travel business.”
Further media information:
Clair Balmer/Elaine Moore, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 077 6652 7719
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is responsible for in excess of 4.9% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 40,000 jobs.
• In 2011, 1.5 million overseas visitors came to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of £368 million.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is ireland.com; it appears in 11 different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world.