Fancy spending one night in Alton Towers?

Thursday:One Night in Alton Towers; (Channel 4, 9pm)

By Claire Cartmill
Wednesday, 15th December 2021, 5:00 pm
Alex Brooker, Josh Widdecombe and Roisin Conaty
Alex Brooker, Josh Widdecombe and Roisin Conaty

Last Christmas, Channel 4 brought us One Night in Hamleys, which gave comedians Tom Allen, Rob Beckett and Romesh Ranganathan the run of the world-famous toy shop, with no security guards or grown-ups to cramp their style.

It sounded like every kid’s dream, but it turned out it was quite appealing to adults too.

Not only did the three comedians have a blast as they raided the shelves, shared festive stories and generally got into the Christmas spirt, but so many viewers tuned into watch them that it became Channel 4’s highest-rated new title of 2020. That’s no mean feat when you consider that most of us spent a lot of that year watching TV because we couldn’t really go out.

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So, it’s no wonder that Channel 4 has decided to repeat the formula by commissioning five new episodes of One Night In… However, these editions will take place in different locations, and will centre around Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe, who will be joined by a different comedian pal for each episode. The only rules are that they must leave the venue how they found it and any breakages must be paid for.

It’s been a big year for the pair, who were first brought together for The Last Leg in 2012. The show began life as part of Channel 4’s Paralympics coverage but proved so popular, it continued to run after the Games had finished, with Alex, Josh and host Adam Hills weighing in on the news as well.

This year, the team got to go back to their roots as they commented on the biggest stories from the (delayed) Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

Meanwhile, Josh also took part in the genealogy series Who Do You Think You Are? earlier this year, and made some startling discoveries. He found out he was related to the Earl of Holland and his 13-time great-grandmother was a cousin of Queen Elizabeth I.

If those weren’t enough royal connections for one episode, he also learned he was related to Anne Boleyn, with some historians believing he was a descendant of King Henry VIII, and that his 23-time great-grandfather was King Edward I.

Hopefully learning he’s descended from royalty won’t make him feel like he has to be too dignified, as the show’s executive producer Ruth Phillips is expecting One Night In to bring out his inner child.

She says: “We can’t wait to let Alex, Josh and friends loose in some thoroughly exciting but empty, iconic locations, allowing them to roam free and muck about through the wee small hours without grown-ups interfering. It promises to be a gleeful, escapist and above all funny show as the cast become the equivalent of mischievous kids in a sweet shop, who’ve overdone the sherbert dip dabs.”

Their first big night in does seem designed to get them over-excited as the duo are joined by Roisin Conaty at the UK’s largest theme park, Alton Towers. Will the fact they won’t have to queue tempt them to ride some of the world’s scariest rollercoasters?

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