Naturalist, broadcaster, and Patron of Humanists UK
“Being kind, forgiving, and feeling love towards others are not traits that belong to any one religion – they are the traits of humans. Humans being decent towards other humans. Praying brings fears and hopes to the front of the mind, but unless they are translated into actions in this one life we have, connecting with others who are also in this life, then very little changes. It’s uncomfortable to imagine the people we love so much as simply dead. But we can still take them on with us, with their genes and the lessons they taught us.” – Ellie Harrison
During her early years, Ellie worked on a farm in Zimbabwe and spent time on wildlife travels in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Canada, before returning to the UK to study. Winning a scholarship from King’s College London, she then travelled back to Zimbabwe to complete her thesis on development and elephant conservation.
Ellie’s television debut came in 2005 as a presenter on Channel 5’s Childrens’ BAFTA–winning series Michaela’s Wild Challenge, undertaking unusual wildlife trials in order to highlight species’ extraordinary traits. She was part of the original presenting team for The ONE Show, filming stories on the best of British wildlife. A stint living in New York saw her working on Canada’s live science show Daily Planet on the Discovery Channel and as sole presenter on The World Without for Discovery Science in the U.S.
She returned to the UK to work on various factual programmes on BBC, ITV and More4. Her subjects are wildlife and the outdoors. Since 2010 she has presented Countryfile, the BBC’s weekly flagship outdoor programme. With audiences between 5 and 9.4 million, Countryfile is the most watched factual programme on British TV.
Ellie has written articles and given presentations on various topics including biodiversity, tonic immobility, wildlife gardening and our watery world. She is President of Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust and a member of the Royal Society of Biology.
During her down time Ellie sings Americana, plays the banjo, and spends time with her three children.