Things are a little different on I’m A Celebrity this year – you don’t have to be too eagle-eyed to spot we’re not in the Australian jungle any more.
The COVID pandemic stopped the biggest show on ITV from heading Down Under and as such, the 2020 series is filmed on home turf, in North Wales, to be precise.
Currently, the I’m A Celebrity 2020 line-up are wrapped up warm in Gwrych Castle, Abergele, taking on some gruesome trials and living off rice, beans, and erm… pigeon.
Although the castle is stunning, it brings along with it some difficulties, namely the lack of free-running hot water and heating, so the celebs have to work hard to make it their home.
Read on for everything you need to know about the stunning I’m A Celebrity filming location.
Where is I’m A Celebrity being held this year?
For the first time ever, I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! is being filmed in the UK due to the ongoing complications and risks posed by the coronavirus pandemic.
ITV confirmed the news in August, giving the crew plenty of time to prepare another series of wild challenges for a fresh batch of unprepared contestants.
I’m A Celebrity 2020 is being filmed in Gwrych Castle, north Wales, and the owners are thought to be receiving £300,000 for the location rights, which is likely to be used for repairs to the tourist attraction.
Richard Cowles, Director of Entertainment, at ITV Studios, said: “We pulled out all the stops to try and make the series happen in Australia.
“Unfortunately, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and despite us looking at many different contingencies, it became apparent that it just wasn’t possible for us to travel and make the show there.
“However, we are all really excited about a UK version of I’m A Celebrity. While it will certainly be different producing the show from the UK, the same tone and feel will remain.
“Our celebrities will probably have to swap shorts for thermals but they can still look forward to a basic diet of rice and beans and plenty of thrills and surprises along the way.”
Where is the I’m A Celebrity castle?
The historic Gwyrch Castle is a Grade I listed 19th-century country house located in the northern Welsh town of Abergele.
It is known as ‘The Showpiece of Wales’ and is a popular tourist attraction in the North Wales area.
Located near the northern coast of Wales, Gwyrch Castle is found near Pensarn and Colwyn Bay.
Look inside the I’m A Celebrity castle
Any notion that the Gwrych Castle location was going to be a gentler experience than the jungle can be immediately dispelled by one look at the bedroom. It is exposed, cold, bleak and barren – the stuff of nightmares!
The castle camp has a Dungeons & Dragons look about it and it’s easy to imagine it being a set for series like Cursed and Game of Thrones. It’s certainly proving to be a horror-filled experience for the 12 celebrities.
Just when you think the set is empty of modern conveniences, you discover a telephone box. But judging by the state of it, anyone at the end of the blower will be delivering bad news…
At least the campers will have the friendly face of Kiosk Cledwyn to greet them when it all gets too much. Did we say friendly? Fiendish.
A stairway to Hell… What awaits the celebrities at the end of these steps?
The castle looks a little less intimidating in daylight but, still, the contestants are destined to get a strong sense of what life was like in more primitive times.
Is this an outhouse or a cottage? Neither. It’s the dunny (well, privy).
There is no jungle stream for the celebrities to wash their togs in so they will have to grapple with antique machinery if they want to maintain hygiene.
Should there be any fairytale romance, the lovers’ seat looks unappealing.
If the celebrities have prepared properly they’ll have been acclimatising to cold showers, as this rudimentary set-up is not a steamy power shower.
Where is I’m A Celebrity usually filmed?
Since the second series in 2003, I’m A Celebrity has been based in Murwillumbah in New South Wales, filmed inside Springbrook National Park.
Previously, The Sun reported that ITV execs were considering moving the camp in 2020, from its current home on a UNESCO heritage site to an area of Kangaroo Island.
Due to this year’s last-minute format change, it’s yet to be confirmed whether such a move is still on the cards for future editions of the competition.
However, if ITV does decide to push on with the move in 2021, we may never see the old camp again – and we didn’t even get to say goodbye!
I’m A Celebrity will premiere on ITV on Sunday 15th November. If you’re looking for something to watch tonight, check out our TV Guide.