Teacup Travels: Edinburgh Kids TV show to start

A CHILDREN’S adventure series filmed in the Capital and featuring one of the stars of the Harry Potter films is premiered on TV tonight.

Gemma Jones and youngsters Evie Brassington and Roddy Gilkison in Teacup Travels. Picture: contributed
Gemma Jones and youngsters Evie Brassington and Roddy Gilkison in Teacup Travels. Picture: contributed

Teacup Travels, which follows two young explorers, was filmed on location in Princes Street Gardens and at Loretto School in Musselburgh.

Each 15-minute story revolves around the fictional adventures of Great Aunt Lizzie – played by Gemma Jones, who starred as Madame Pomfrey in the Harry Potter films – as she tells seven-year-old Charlotte and nine-year-old Elliot of her travels through history. City schoolgirl Evie Brassington will play Charlotte, alongside Roddy Gilkison, from Glasgow, as Elliot, in the show produced by Leith-based Plum Films.

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The CBeebies programme is the brainchild of Capital-born writer Tony Bibby, who was inspired by stories told by his own Great Aunt Lizzie.

Kay Benbow, director of children’s television at the BBC, said the show would be the first on the network to bring ancient history and archaeology to young audiences.

He said: “The series combines storytelling with high adventure in a way that will inspire and encourage children to want to learn more about life in ancient times.

“I think children will love going on the adventures with Charlotte and Elliot to discover more about what life was like thousands of years ago.”

In the show, the children are fascinated by their Great Aunt’s collection of unique teacups and choose a different one every time they visit.

Each cup is decorated with a historical item which prompts her to tell one of her stories about her adventures as an archeologist, with the children setting off in her footsteps to discover the item for real. All 25 episodes are inspired by a real artefact from a UK museum.

Simon Parsons, of Plum Films, said Teacup Travels was a series of “wonderful adventure stories”, said he hoped young viewers would be inspired to learn more about what they see.

“We are working with museums around the UK to ensure objects from the stories will be on permanent display where the audience will be able to visit them,” he added.

Filmed entirely in Scotland with funding from the BBC and Creative Scotland, the sets were created in Loretto School, Musselburgh, and outdoor scenes filmed at the Head Gardener’s Cottage in Princes Street Gardens.

Natalie Usher, director of Film and Media at Creative Scotland, said children would be “captivated and inspired”.

The first episode will be aired at 5.45pm tonight.