The Naked Rambler: BBC One looks at Britain’s famous naturist

by SteveRogerson

Naturist Stephen Gough is the subject of a BBC One documentary – The Naked Rambler – due to be broadcast on Tuesday 20th August 2013.

Former marine Stephen Gough is famous for his naked walks around Britain, many of which have landed him in gaol. In this fifty-minute documentary, director Guy Gilbert looks at Gough's motivations and the reactions of his family and supporters, and asks why what he is doing is considered a crime in the eyes of the law..

Stephen Gough in The Naked Rambler
Stephen Gough in The Naked Rambler
Photo from the BBC and Oblong Films

Britain’s most famous naturist Stephen Gough will have the spotlight turned on him in The Naked Rambler, a fifty-minute documentary due to be broadcast on BBC One on Tuesday 20th August 2013. Gough is a man who dislikes wearing clothes and believes he is making a political statement by refusing to do so, even when he has been brought in front of the courts. Such actions often mean his sentence is increased, resulting in him spending nearly seven years in prison, mostly in solitary confinement, again because of his refusal to wear clothes.

He earned the nickname The Naked Rambler because he does just that, walks for miles, including twice the length of Great Britain from Land’s End to John O’Groats, wearing just a pair of boots and a rucksack. His regular incarcerations have meant he has not seen his two teenage children grow up.

In this programme, director Guy Gilbert follows Stephen as he attempts to walk home to his family in Eastleigh, Hampshire. Walking over 400 miles naked is fraught with difficulties. It's a four-month quest beset by arrests, police cells, court appearances, releases, re-arrests and prison.

The programme also tries to understand what motivates Stephen’s public nakedness when his actions often land him in gaol. It looks at how the public react to the sight of him and the views of his family and supporters. And it asks the big question of whether what he is doing really is wrong.

 

About Stephen Gough

Stephen Gough was born in 1959 and is a former Royal Marine and lorry driver. He first did his famous Land’s End to John O’Groats walk in 2003 and 2004 and repeated the ramble in 2005 and 2006. Both walks were interrupted by arrests and sometimes imprisonment.

 

Not to be confused with…

A much younger Stephen Gough is the Irish footballer born in 1981 who plays for Crumlin United, though his career includes a spell with the famous Shamrock Rovers for whom he was the Young Player of the Year in 2004. His time with Rovers included four appearances in the Uefa Intertoto Cup. He is not known for taking his clothes off.

 

Team Behind The Naked Rambler

The Naked Rambler was made by Oblong Films, directed by Guy Gilbert, executive produced by Jonny Young for Oblong Films and commissioned by Samantha Anstiss from the BBC.

“Stephen Gough is a controversial figure who always draws strong reactions from the British public,” said Jonny Young. “He believes he has a right to be naked but the law is there to protect the rights of the public, many of whom do not want to see him naked. It’s a never-ending battle.”

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Updated: on 08/14/2013, SteveRogerson
 
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