Preston’s troubled bus station is fast becoming a media celebrity. Following last week’s appearance on The Daily Politics show, and further coverage in Saturday’s Financial Times, now the BBC’s Culture Show has just rolled into town. The Culture Show is the BBC’s flagship arts programme that covers a diverse range of arts related topics including books, film, art and architecture.
The film crew have spent the last couple of days shooting footage for a Culture Show Heritage Special that’s due to be aired next week. The crew started filming in yesterday’s blizzard conditions but I caught up with them as they were filming in calmer circumstances earlier today. The crew were joined by presenter and architecture critic Tom Dyckhoff who has written extensively on architectural and design matters and is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects.
During a break in filming, we all retired to the bus station café where the team enjoyed a hearty lunch washed down with numerous mugs of proper Preston tea! Tom was most impressed with his choice of steak and kidney pudding, mash, peas and gravy! When filming restarted, still in the café, Tom interviewed veteran bus station campaigner John Wilson, who has been a leading figure in the fight to save Preston Bus Station from the wrecking ball. Earlier in the day, Tom had also interviewed Preston City Council leader Peter Rankin to get the council’s perspective on the situation.
While watching proceedings in the café, my attention was grabbed by the constant stream of passersby, staring in through the café windows with bemused looks on their faces at the sight of the cameras and film crew. The bus station is no stranger to film cameras though, much of the film ‘Piercing Brightness’ by Shezad Dawood was shot there, and the building provided a stunning backdrop to the BBC’s ‘Preston Passion’ last Easter. Believe it or not, even CBBC have recorded a music video for a children’s programme there! Love it or loathe it, the controversial building seems to be the location of choice for TV and film makers right now, and it doesn’t look like the media interest in it is going to subside any time soon.
You can catch the bus station’s latest starring role in The Culture Show Heritage Special on Wednesday the 20th of March at 10pm on BBC2. It promises to be very interesting!