ITV to recreate I’m A Celebrity jungle for theme park in Salford

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James Gourley/ITV/Shutterstock

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Harry Redknapp was crowned king of the jungle in December 2018

It’s a long way from the Australian rainforest to Salford Quays, but ITV is to recreate the I’m A Celebrity jungle there for a new visitor attraction.

The indoor I’m A Celebrity… Jungle Challenge will offer a “multi-sensory adrenaline adventure” from next year.

The venue, part of a £26m leisure development, will include replicas of Base Camp, Croc Creek and Snake Rock.

But ITV said visitors won’t come into direct contact with animals or insects – or be required to eat any bugs.

Bush tucker might be on sale for those who want it, however.

The broadcaster is finalising how live creepy crawlies will be involved in the experience. Visitors might come face-to-face with spiders or other beasties in glass tanks – but won’t get the TV show’s full-on skin-crawling experience.

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James Gourley/ITV/Shutterstock

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Visitors won’t face the same ordeal as Emily Atack did in this trial in 2018

The programme has been criticised by campaigners, including Chris Packham, who recently called on it to stop “abusing animals”.

Most of the attraction will be a 90-minute “action-packed challenge” involving things like zipwires, parachute drops and climbing walls. On their way, visitors will collect stars in an attempt to be crowned king or queen of the jungle.

James Penfold, ITV’s controller of partnerships, said: “It brings together the heart and soul of the hugely celebrated series, and ITV’s expertise in curating fantastic, memorable live brand experiences as a great example of our More than TV strategy.”

ITV already runs tours of its Coronation Street and Emmerdale sets, and its daytime studios at Television Centre in London, but this will be a different and more hand-on experience.

The 2,500 sq m I’m A Celebrity… Jungle Challenge will be part of the new Watergardens development next to the Lowry Outlet Mall in Salford, Greater Manchester.

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