August 1, 2008

City Postie is Ready to Stamp Her Mark on the Small Screen WATCH IT To See Gwen in Action on the New Video, Log on to Www.Edinburghnews.Com


SHE'S more used to delivering letters to homes and businesses than reciting lines to camera.

But an Edinburgh postwoman is set to become an internet star, after making a promotional video about some of the best places to visit in Edinburgh.

Gwen Fleming, 49, of Newhaven, was asked to take part in the project, funded by VisitBritain, which has seen posties in different areas of the UK and Northern Ireland film short guided tours to their local areas.

The aim of the campaign, called "A First Class Guide to Britain and Northern Ireland", is to champion the postal workers "unique local knowledge", and show potential tourists a local's eye view of the city.

Ms Fleming, who has worked for Royal Mail for 25 years, put her knowledge of the city to use by giving her own opinions on some the Capital's best-known locations, including Edinburgh Castle, the underground vaults, Portobello Beach, the Grassmarket and the Scottish Parliament.

She admitted she had been "very nervous" about the filming and had been the brunt of a few jokes from colleagues.

"When I went into the office after filming, all my colleagues had put up a big silver star on my door and they were saying this is my 15 minutes of fame," she said. "

It was good fun going around all the locations - some of them had been chosen in advance, like the castle, but I suggested Portobello Beach, as I thought people abroad might not realise the capital city had a lovely beach on its doorstep.

"It was very nerve-wracking though - I always sit at home and think how easy it must be to work in TV, but after this I have a lot more respect for them.

"The folk at work were all really supportive when they saw the film, and they've been playing it on the screens at work."

Mr Fleming admitted she would probably "think more carefully" before agreeing to do another film. "It was good fun, and if I got a bit more notice next time I might do it again," she said.

The video guides are currently running on YouTube, as well as at the VisitBritain website, and include guides to London, Northern Ireland, Wales, Cornwall and Yorkshire.

Tom Wright, VisitBritain's chief executive, said:

"Although people might be familiar with the locations, Royal Mail have created an insiders' guide to some of the hidden secrets from around the country."

(c) 2008 Evening News; Edinburgh (UK). Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All rights Reserved.