Entertainment & Arts

Stephen Fry lends his voice to talking bench

Stephen Fry
Image caption Stephen Fry grew up in Norfolk

Benches that can 'talk' are being set up at eight beauty spots across the UK, voiced by celebrities including Stephen Fry and Miranda Hart.

The National Trust project will give listeners the chance to hear five-minute monologues inspired by nature.

Other famous names involved include philosopher Alain de Botton, cricket commentator David Gower, and presenter Claudia Winkleman.

The venues include Felbrigg Hall in Norfolk and Castle Ward, County Down.

Fry, who has voiced the bench at Felbrigg Hall, said: "To quote, or nearly quote, W H Davies, 'What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare?'"

"I am very proud to be associated with a bench and I hope I provide comfort, balm and solace for many a weary bottom."

Fry will be heard relaying tales of filming A Cock and Bull Story at Felbrigg, while sitcom star Hart will wax lyrical about how her love for the outdoors was re-ignited on a recent bike ride from John O'Groats to Land's End.

The benches have taken more than six months to make and each one is engraved with three words their celebrity has used to describe their setting.

The other venues are Craigside, Northumberland, Quarry Mill Bank in Cheshire, Petworth House and Park, West Sussex, Cotehele, Cornwall, Derbyshire's Calke Abbey and Dinefwr Park and Castle, Carmarthenshire.

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