Millport residents arose this morning to a new world; one filled with the promise of cold hard cash or ‘Balamory bucks’ as news that Scots-born John Barrowman had secured funding for a television series based on his and his sister Carole’s young adult novel series Hollow Earth.
Millport which The Sun is duty bound to call ‘sleepy’ is in Cumbrae, off Ayrshire, and was the inspiration for the fictional telepaths
John and Carole Matt and Em’s own location, Auchinmurn.
In fact, local legends speak of a time when a young Barrowman, playing in the rock pools, declared he was going to one day return here and bring with him: “Craft services and Grips, surly, surly Grips.”
Standing on the beech today John raising his hands to the sky doth said: “let there be cash!” and lo, the sky turned the colour of a digital effect, B ‘n B prices soared and the laughably named Hollywood Nails boutique suddenly looked prescient as TV money fell from the heavens.
There were doubters; a small, niggling group who spoke of intrusions both small and petty; while the odd naysayer clung desperately to the unfounded notion that they might just sack the isles off altogether and film in Toronto but Barrowman, with an assured voice, eased the minds of his loyal subjects:
“I’m also looking to clinch a major Hollywood movie deal.”
And the crowd suddenly remembered that Young Adult novels were a ‘thing’ and Barrowman’s master plan unfurled beautifully before their eyes.
Verifying Barrowman’s plan production company The Foundation (behind TV shows like Waybuloo) confirmed it too liked money; announced it had secured rights to develop a children’s drama series based on Hollow Earth.
Fever gripped and soon talk turned to what could be achieved in Millport: could it indeed follow the multi-coloured financial model set out by Balamory and bring big tourism trade to Millport just as it had done in Tobermory, on Mull?
Margaret Kennedy, who runs Millport’s Royal George Hotel, stood proudly and yelled:
“This could be amazing for the island and turn us into a really big draw.”
Encouraged by such proclamations Ken Mapes, chairman of the Isle of Cumbrae Tourist Association, stated proudly that:
“We’ve got a moviemaker’s paradise here.”
To which everyone nodded, saying; “Yeah, not really.”
Not content with pleasing just humans Barrowman has also won the inaugural PetNet Celebrity Pet Owner Award after caring for his pet pooches Harris, Charlie and Captain Jack reports The Penarth Times.
Upon receiving the award Barrowman said:
“My dogs play such an important role in my life and I am proud to promote responsible ownership…I will be donating my prize money to Dogs Trust. As their patron, I understand how incredibly hard they work to find new homes for stray and abandoned dogs.”