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The Grand Tour could be filmed in Britain while COVID restricts travel, says James May

The co-host of Amazon's motoring show says they need to forget overseas specials for now.

James May, the grand tour
Dave J Hogan/Getty Images
Published: Thursday, 23rd July 2020 at 2:56 am

James May has said The Grand Tour trio met in person for the first time since lockdown recently and may be relocating their motoring adventures at home for the near future.


The Grand Tour of Britain doesn't have quite the exotic ring to it of their usual settings (like Madgascar, Mongolia or Malaysia), but May said they had to be realistic about making the programme while COVID-19 still had a grip on the world.

"The effects of lockdown on making TV shows is that we have to retract our ambitions for travel," he told The Sun. "It’s not just, ‘Can we get on an aeroplane and go somewhere?’ but, ‘Are we going to be able to do anything when we get there?’

"We need to talk to people and it’s an enormous crew with all our kit plus ten or 15 vans. It’s very difficult and we don’t want to compromise it. It limits the places we can go."

May believed Amazon Prime Video, home to The Grand Tour, would be in agreement about waiting before planning any more exotic specials. So that means the planned epic Grand Tour of Russia is off? Da.

Instead the trio of presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and May could be making the next episodes in Britain and Ireland.

He said: "We may have to accept that if you’re in Britain or America, us being in Cambodia or Africa is exotic, but for our viewers in those places us being in Ireland would be exotic. 

"So maybe we have to start thinking a bit more like that."

May said there were all sorts of "lovely places" they could travel to in the UK and you would "struggle" to find parts of the world better looking than Scotland, Cornwall, Dorset, Wales and the Ring of Kerry in Ireland.

"Whenever we make the Grand Tour, and it was the same on Top Gear, it’s about the subject first and the story, then we make it fit somewhere," he said.

May revealed that lockdown was the longest period he'd spent away from Hammond and Clarkson since the start of Top Gear. "Three glorious months — it was just amazing. I think that’s why I’m so fit and healthy at the moment, not having the stress of having to deal with them," he said.


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