Doomsday Preppers – USA versus UK

Is everything really bigger and better in America? When it comes to preparing for the apocalypse, we Brits give the Yanks a run for their money - sort of...

War, global recession, super storms, the rise of Justin Bieber – the world is a frightening and volatile place. Which is why the smart people are preparing for the impending apocalypse by building impregnable bunkers and stockpiling food, weapons… and chemical toilets.


The US is big on “Doomsday Prepping” (the National Geographic channel has a whole series about them) but an increasing number of Brits have decided to get serious about preparing for the apocalypse too. They say everything’s bigger in America – but is that really true? How do the Preppers of these British Isles stack up against their transatlantic counterparts? There’s only one way to find out…

Basic equipment

When the apocalypse hits you’re going to need waterproof covers to keep you dry and decent bedding to keep you warm. You’ll want fuel for heat (and to run your chainsaw, of course) and, not least, decent toilet facilities. 

Tim Ralston from Phoenix, Arizona, looks very well prepared (Tim is the one on the left).

Annie from London, on the other hand, is apparently just going camping for a couple of days. At least she has a small axe – presumably in case she gets attacked by bears…


The post-apocalyptic world is going to be a wild, lawless place. You’ll need weapons to defend yourself and to protect what’s yours. You’ll also need them for hunting – food doesn’t grow on trees you know (well, except fruit). 

Malcolm Bowler from Buckinghamshire has LOTS of bow-and-arrows (bows-and-arrows?). Look, one’s even got a telescopic sight on it. You wouldn’t want to mess with Malcolm…

Oh, unless you were Pat from Ashoskie, North Carolina, of course, who has a garage full of guns. Pat loves his guns…


You can’t forage and hunt all your food – in the event of a nuclear attack you won’t even be able to venture outside for fear of radiation fallout. You’ll need to stockpile some supplies.

Simon Dillon from Greater Manchester has a walk-in cupboard full of food. Look, he’s got some tins of baked beans there and his peaches in syrup. Good man.

This store room belongs to Paul Range from Floresville, Texas. We’re not sure exactly how far these winding aisles extend but Paul reckons he has enough food here to last ten people for 20 years (or one person for 200 years).

One solution to the food situation is to rear your own. Simon has a chicken. Surely the Americans can’t beat a chicken…?

Oh, I see – a chicken and a duck. Jordana from Pasadena, California, is soooo smug.

Oh yes, and Paul has an entire farmyard. Just wait until the nuclear fallout gives those geese three heads, tentacles and massive teeth Paul, then we’ll see how clever you are…

So… we’ll just call it a draw, shall we?

Doomsday Preppers is on National Geographic at 10pm on Wednesdays


Preppers UK: Surviving Armageddon is on Wednesday 28 November at 9pm