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BBC documentary follows new life of man living alone on a Welsh island

11 Aug 2023 2 minute read
One Man and His Island will air on BBC One next Friday 18 August.

A new BBC documentary will follow an ex-aircraft engineer as he embarks on a completely new life on  his own as a warden on a Welsh island.

Titled ‘One Man and His Island’, the documentary follows former RAF aircraft engineer Simon Parker, as he becomes the warden of Flat Holm Island, off the coast of Cardiff in the Bristol Channel.

After suffering a series of traumatic events in his life, the latest episode of the BBC’s ‘Our Lives’ strand follows Simon on Flat Holm Island as he is exposed to the worst of the weather and living without mains power or water.

The island is a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to its gull colony, which makes up 20% of the entire Welsh gull population.

Simon Parker on Flat Holm Island

Monitoring them requires a squad of volunteers with hard hats and overalls as the gulls spread plenty of their “good luck” around.

They might not be many people’s favourite birds but they are suffering a decline in numbers and Flat Holm is a crucial breeding ground.

Summer day-trippers also visit the island and might enjoy a drink in the Gull and Leek, Wales’ most southerly pub.

The opening hours? “Whatever I decide” says Simon.


As spring turns to summer, Simon continues to learn all about the island and its wildlife – and perhaps more importantly, something about himself too.

Simon said, “Changing my career for something more rewarding and so beautiful, full of wildlife, just really appealed. Once I heard this was available, I didn’t want to miss out.”

One Man and His Island will air on BBC One next Friday 18 August at 7.30pm.

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