BENIDORM Mayor Agustin Navarro and Leire Bilbao, Director of the Tourism Foundation, turned up on location at the Mirador in the Old Town.
The mayor is an enthusiastic supporter of ITV’s Benidorm sitcom – now in its eighth series – and could not resist grabbing hold of the clapperboard on set, as our exclusive picture shows.
Filming of the first series took place in 2006; in September 2012, the mayor and British Consul presented it creator and writer Derren Litten with a plaque acknowledging his contribution to increasing tourism in the resort. It is now located on the wall of the Tourist Information Office in front of Morgan’s Tavern in the Rincon.
Although a popular destination prior to the programme, bookings soared and continue to do so every time the series is screened.
The first day of filming started on March 24 with the cast and crew based in the resort for a 13-week period. Local businesses all feel the knock-on financial benefits, estimated at €2 million.
Mayor Navarro watched a scene being filmed between actress Sherrie Hewson and John Challis – best known as Boycie from Only Fools and Horses – overlooking the popular Levante Bay.
He then chatted with Pere Agullo, the Spanish production manager from Filming Spain, writer Derren Litten, new director Robin Sheppard and series line producer Simon Bird.
Filming Spain is the company appointed by Tiger Aspect in London to be responsible for liaising with the town hall to ensure that filming goes smoothly.