Wednesday, 3 October 2012

To Boldly Go Where No Cameraman Has Gone Before...

"Are you sure..?" I asked my News Producer as he told me the location for this evenings live into our local news programme.

"Yep... I'm sure." came the reply.

Ende of the Worlde... I am about to drop off the local maps...

So i find myself cruising down the M4 towards the outer reaches of my broadcasting remit. To an area of banditry and pestilence, otherwise known as Swindon. My Sat-Nav asked on more than one occasion to 'Please perform a u-turn now...' I could almost hear the pleading tone of her electronic fear of where she was directing me.

I ignored it and pressed down the accelerator and further into the nearly unknown.

As the M4 turned into the A419, which in turn turned into a single lane and then a dirt track, my Sat-Nav proudly announced that 'Here be Dragons,' and 'Go no further... Ende of the Worlde...' I really was on the outer reaches of BBC South Today.

You see, we spend a lot of time where most of the news action happens. Cities, large towns and conurbations close to home, where the news is easy to reach and easier to get back to the ranch. We forget sometimes that the outer reaches exist and that things do, in fact, go on there. Swindon has electricity you know. And people. Apparently, they don't even live under a feudal hierarchy. Who knew..?

As i pulled my news wagon into the car park and unpacked my camera gear, i felt as if the local populace may surround me with pitchforks and flaming torches for such a display of witchcraft. But no... It turned out that they were travelling salesmen, just as bemused as i at finding themselves near Swindon. It's that kind of town.

Ah... dear, dear Swindon. A town largely ignored and villified by a mocking few. But not i... no longer. For i see a comely buxom wench milking the local cows by hand. She turns to me and in a slight, almost West Country accent with a Bristol twang, she says... "Alright my luvverrr..?"

I am smitten. In Swindon.

Paul Martin is @ukcameraman on Twitter.