Susan Calman enjoys another Grand Day Out

Friday:Susan Calman’s Grand Day Out; (Channel 5, 8pm)

Is Susan Calman becoming the new face of Channel 5?

We’re certainly set to be seeing a lot more of her on the channel over the coming year.

She’s stepping into Jane McDonald’s shoes with a new series of Cruising with Susan Calman (we got a taster of that with a Christmas special), and there’s also the forthcoming Antiques Adventure, which she is very excited about.

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She explains: “I’m ready to blow the dust off some antiques and have a big adventure with the help of some new friends.

“I may not be an expert but I’m enthusiastic with a lot to learn and I can’t wait for my crash course into the world of collectables.

“If nothing else we’ll have a lot of fun!”

In the meantime, we can catch the comedian in the latest run of her travelogue Grand Day Out, which this week sees her heading for Yorkshire.

That’s going to be a real treat for Susan, not least because she gets to meet ‘Calendar Girl’ Tricia Stewart at a Women’s Institute Meeting at Linton in Craven.

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Tricia was one of the women who stripped off for a charity calendar that became a media sensation – and when the story was turned into a film, she was the inspiration for Helen Mirren’s character.

As regular viewers will know, Susan is such a fan of Dame Helen, she named her campervan after her, so no doubt she’ll be delighted to hear some behind-the-scenes stories.

But will she be quite so enthusiastic about posing herself?

We’ll have to wait until the end of the episode to find out as the WI is her last port of call – she starts off by exploring the North Yorkshire Moors and the Yorkshire Dales.

This beautiful part of the world has become known as Herriot Country thanks to the success of the books by James Herriot, the pen name of Yorkshire vet James Alfred Wight.

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His novels were adapted into the TV series All Creatures Great and Small by the BBC in the 1970s, and more recently Channel 5 has brought a new version of the drama to our screens.

Now, Susan visits Herriot’s former home in Thirsk, where she learns more about the man himself from his daughter, Rosie.

The presenter also gets a chance to try out the farming lifestyle as she gets behind the wheel of a tractor, before visiting the village of Muker to check out its brass band – although she discovers it’s more of a silver band due to the finish on their instruments.

Then it’s on Ripley, where Susan gets an extensive guided tour of the castle courtesy of Sir Thomas and Lady Emma Ingilby, whose family have lived there for over 700 years.

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Naturally, over the centuries, they’ve accumulated a few heirlooms and priceless artefacts, and the presenter can’t resist trying on some of the armour as well as having a nosy around.

But will Susan be equally won over by Settle, which was once voted amongst the best places to live in the country?

I’m sure she’ll give a good try!

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