Julia Bradbury Biography 2022
Credited with revamping Sunday night primetime television on BBC One’s Countryfile, and described as ‘both authoritative and warm’ by one tv critic Julia has an impressive career which has seen her launch three television channels, present numerous significant long term series including Watchdog, Top Gear and Countryfile, as well as writing several books and turning walking into a primetime hit on the BBC and ITV.
As one of the small screen’s most popular and versatile faces Julia recently completed a personal goal of co-developing her own series, securing funding and playing a fundamental role in the commissioning process.
“To start with a notebook on the kitchen table, film an entire series with a team I love and respect, which millions of people ultimately tuned into, is incredibly satisfying.”
‘When you hear the words “you have cancer” your world stops’
They’re words no one wants to hear. It’s a club that no one wants to be part of and yet so many are. Any cancer diagnosis is a journey. And that journey is different for everyone taking it. It’s a startling statistic that 1 in 7 women in their lifetime will get breast cancer.
Julia never thought it would be her – until the summer of 2021 when she got the call from her consultant following a biopsy from a lump found in her left breast.
Her journey so far has been documented in “Julia Bradbury – Breast Cancer & Me” which was shown on ITV1 on 28th April 2022.
The documentary has been nominated for a National Television Award.
Her last series co-developed with Twofour Productions, Cornwall & Devon Walks with Julia Bradbury, aired on primetime ITV in the spring of 2021.
It was a celebration of nature and it’s positive impact on mental health. A visually dazzling series which captured Julia’s infectious enthusiasm for the outdoors and showed off the beauty and variety of this much loved part of the UK.
The Greek Islands with Julia Bradbury for ITV made with Twofour Productions saw Julia trace her Greek heritage around the shimmering Greek coastline, partly with her Mama Mou – Chrissi.
In this series Julia also managed to highlight issues that she cares about including plastic pollution, sustainable fishing and the preservation of natural landscapes.
The nature, wildlife and engaging Greek culture and history (and food!) also shone through on screen, making this hugely popular series one of the highest rating travel programmes on ITV that year with millions of viewers and a 17% audience share.
10K Holiday Home (ITV) was hugely popular and saw Julia buy a tiny Little Blue House in a quiet village in Northern Portugal to renovate with the help of designer and upcycler Max McMurdo.
The locals welcomed her with open arms and helped out with food and showers! Julia visited other people around Europe who had managed to buy their homes for under 10k too, including a couple in France who paid 1euro for a cave and another who paid for their apartment in Bulgaria with a credit card. Julia maintained a taste for the delicious sweet Portuguese pies Pastel Del Nata while she was filming, which became a reoccurring onscreen theme!
For the past three years Julia has presented Goodwood’s Festival of Speed where she can indulge her love of beautiful motor cars, although these days it’s all about the electric beasts not the V12’s.
In 2015 the Wonders of Britain series launched on ITV. This saw Julia travelling across the country reporting on the history and drama of the beautiful places and buildings have made Britain great. From our industrial and royal heritage, to rolling countryside, dramatic coastlines and beautifully eclectic buildings. The show documented her 12,000 mile journey using Julia’s wonder-fully effervescent personality to bring the locations to life.
More stand out television moments:
Matt Baker (The One Show/Countryfile) and Julia have a well documented on-screen chemistry and have been friends since they started working together on Countryfile. After pairing up on that and Secret Britain (BBC1), in 2010 Julia and Matt supported the Children in Need charity appeal and took part in a unique globetrotting experience, Around the World in 80 Days. The six part series saw six celebrity pairings embark on a mammoth quest to travel around the world in relay race fashion – Julia and Matt undertook the Asian leg, traveling through Kazakhstan, Russia and Mongolia. Their efforts raised over tens of thousands of pounds for the charity. Matt has subsequently become famous his Rickshaw Challenge and has raised millions over the past decade.
In Climb Britain for BBC1 Julia faced her fears and managed to successfully climb to the top of The Old Man of Stoer – a 60 meter high sea stack that surges from the sea alongside the cliffs in Lochinver, Sutherland. Julia had never rock climbed before and regards this as one of her most frightening challenges. “It is good to push yourself – to prove to that you really can do anything if you set your mind to it.”
As a pioneer for outdoor exploration and adventure, drawing on her epic travels throughout the UK, Julia contributed to DK Travel Guides’ publication, Where To Go When: Great Britain and Ireland.
Additional TV ventures which she is proud of include BBC Three’s Kill It, Cook It, Eat It. It explored how our meat makes its way from field to fork, examined our relationship with food and meat in particular, and became the first show on British television to create a purpose-built abattoir in a studio to demonstrate the slaughter process to a studio audience watching on the other side of a glass wall.
The follow up series – Kill It, Cut It, Use It looked at the ubiquitous use of animal by-products used in an array of unexpected everyday products from beer to hair spray.
Outside of her presenting duties, Julia’s culinary expertise was put to the test with an appearance on Channel 4’s cult hit Come Dine With Me, in which she went head-to-head with Edwina Currie, Christopher Biggins and Philip Olivier, all of whom were vying to stage the most delectable dinner party. Her Aquavit fuelled starters made her episode an un-missable hit.
She also sang alongside legend Tony Christie in BBC One’s Just The Two of Us, in which six famous faces were paired with professional singers to duet together for viewers’ votes. They reached the quarter-finals of the second series.
Julia co-founded The Outdoor Guide in 2010 with her sister Gina which is an online resource and space for outdoor inspiration. Julia’s TV walks and hundreds more are available to download for free on the site.
A Little Bit of Positive is Julia’s podcast with best selling author Giles Payley Phillips which has a simple goal; to keep people uplifted with positive stories from inspiring, happy, positive guests.
Outside her television life Julia is an ambassador for Keep Britain Tidy, The National Trust and a champion for Ordnance Survey.
She also supports a wide range of women’s charities including PlanUK and Endometriosis UK, as well as The Ashden Foundation, WWF, Surfers Against Sewage, #2minuteBeachClean, Prostate Cancer UK and Whale and Dolphin Conservation, Julia is also proud to be the first female President of The Camping and Caravanning Club.
Following her involvement with the BBC programme Famous, Rich and Homeless, where she slept rough on the streets of London for 7 days for Sport Relief, she’s a supporter of the Big Issue and continues to highlight the issues surrounding homelessness.
But despite her fulfilling career Julia claims that her proudest achievement is the arrival of her son Zephyrus, born in 2011 and her twin girls Zena and Xanthe, born in 2015. She lives with her family in West London.
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