Ben Fogle

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Ben Fogle
Fogle in Antarctica (2023)
Benjamin Myer Fogle[1]

(1973-11-03) 3 November 1973 (age 50)
Alma materUniversity of Portsmouth
University of Costa Rica
Occupation(s)Television presenter and writer
SpouseMarina Fogle (m. 2006)[2]
ChildrenLudo Fogle (b. 2009)
Iona Fogle (b. 2011)[2]
Parent(s)Julia Foster
Bruce Fogle Edit this at Wikidata

Benjamin Myer Fogle, FRGS (born 3 November 1973[3]) is an English broadcaster, writer and adventurer, best known for his presenting roles with British television channels Channel 5, BBC and ITV.

Early life[edit]

Fogle is the son of English actress Julia Foster and Canadian veterinarian Bruce Fogle. He was educated at two independent schools: The Hall School, Hampstead in London, and Bryanston School in Blandford Forum, Dorset.

Fogle went to Ecuador for a gap year, working in an orphanage teaching English. He then took a second year working on a turtle conservation project on the Mosquito Coast of Honduras and Nicaragua.

Fogle studied for a degree in Latin American studies at the University of Portsmouth, before studying for a year at the University of Costa Rica.[4]

During this time Fogle also became a Midshipman in the Royal Naval Reserve, serving as an URNU officer on HMS Blazer and delivering aid to war-torn Bosnia and Croatia.[5]



Fogle's initial jobs included picture editor at Tatler magazine.[4]


Fogle first came to public notice when he participated in the BBC reality show Castaway 2000, which followed a group of thirty-six people marooned on the Scottish island of Taransay for a year, starting 1 January 2000. This was a social experiment aimed at creating a fully self-sufficient community within a year.

Fogle is a television presenter who has worked for the BBC, ITV, Channel 5, Sky, Discovery and the National Geographic channels in the UK. He has hosted Crufts, One Man and His Dog, Countryfile, Country Tracks, Extreme Dreams with Ben Fogle, Animal Park, Wild on the West Coast, Wild in Africa, "Ben Fogle – African Migration" and Ben Fogle's Escape in Time.

In 2010, Fogle made a film about the facial deforming disease noma for a BBC Two documentary Make Me A New Face which followed the work of the charity Facing Africa and Great Ormond Street Hospital.[6]

Fogle has produced films about naval history and the Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) for the History Channel and followed Princes William and Harry on their first joint Royal Tour in Botswana and made an exclusive documentary called Prince William's Africa. He marked the centenary of Captain Scott's expedition to the South Pole with The Secrets of Scott's Hut. Fogle is popular on the motivational and corporate speaking circuit. His two-part documentary, Swimming with Crocodiles aired on BBC Two in 2012.[7] Production commenced in 2011 for Storm City in 3D on Sky One and National Geographic.[8] Fogle was hired for two years as a special correspondent for NBC News in the United States, in 2011. Their purpose was to cover the April royal wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton and the 2012, London Olympics.[9]

Fogle appeared on the programme Countryfile with John Craven from 2001 to 2008, during which he reported on a number of UK rural pastimes. He rejoined the programme in 2014.

Since 2013, Fogle has presented two series of Harbour Lives, a documentary series on ITV. In 2014, Fogle joined the presenting team on ITV series Countrywise with Liz Bonnin and Paul Heiney, which covers aspects of the British coast and country.

Since 2013, Fogle has presented his show for Channel 5 called Ben Fogle: New Lives in the Wild, that sees him follow the stories of people living "off grid" in the wild and isolated from society.[10] In 2024, he interviewed musician Vanessa Forero in her Colombian cabin about the kidnapping of her mother Marina Chapman, and has expressed his hope to make a film about Chapman's life story.[11]

Fogle took over as the host of recommissioned and re-titled, 'Ben Fogle's Animal Clinic' on Channel 5, replacing disgraced presenter, Rolf Harris.


Atlantic Rowing Race[edit]

Fogle and Cracknell before the start of the 2005 Atlantic Rowing Race

Fogle was the first to cross the line in the pairs division of the 2005–2006 Atlantic Rowing Race in "Spirit of EDF Energy", partnered by Olympic rower James Cracknell. While competing in the 3,000-mile race, the pair had their boat fully capsized by huge waves. They made landfall in Antigua at 07.13 GMT on 19 January 2006, a crossing time of 49 days, 19 hours, 8 minutes. After penalties, they were placed second in the pairs and fourth overall. In 2007, the BBC series that followed the pair, Through Hell and High Water, won a Royal Television Society award.

Marathon des Sables[edit]

He has also completed the six-day Marathon des Sables for the World Wide Fund for Nature across 160 miles (260 km) of the Sahara Desert and the Safaricom Marathon in Kenya for the Tusk Trust, with Longleat Safari Park keeper Ryan Hockley. Fogle has completed the Bupa Great North Run in 1 hour 33 minutes, the London Marathon and the Royal Parks Half Marathon. He beat EastEnders actor Sid Owen in a three-round charity boxing match for BBC Sport Relief under the training of Frank Bruno and he recently re-ran the Safaricom marathon in Kenya with the injured Battleback Soldiers.

Amundsen Omega 3 South Pole Race[edit]

Fogle teamed up with Cracknell once again, together with Ed Coats, a Bristol-based doctor,[12] as Team QinetiQ to take part in the inaugural "Amundsen Omega 3 South Pole Race". Six teams set out to race across the Antarctic Plateau to commemorate the historic race of 1911 between Roald Amundsen and Robert Falcon Scott. Having led the race for much of the time,[13] the team took 18 days, 5 hours and 10 minutes to complete the 770-kilometre (480 mi) race, coming second overall, 20 hours[14][15] behind the Norwegian team, who commended them on making it "a fantastic race",[16] and over two days ahead of the next placed team.[17] Fogle suffered hypothermia and frostbite to his nose and the team experienced temperatures as low as −40 °C (−40 °F). The race was filmed by the BBC for the series On Thin Ice and was aired in Summer 2009. Five episodes of On Thin Ice were broadcast on BBC Two Sunday evenings[18] receiving a peak record of 3.7 million viewers. Macmillan published an account of their journey, Race to The Pole, which became a top-10 best-seller in the UK.

In October 2009, Fogle and Cracknell cycled a rickshaw 423 miles from Edinburgh to London non-stop. They took 60 hours to reach the capital, raising money for SSAFA (Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association). The event was filmed as part of The Pride of Britain Awards.[citation needed] Fogle and Cracknell planned to take part in the Tour Divide race in 2010, a 3,000-mile mountain-bike race across the Rocky Mountains, from Banff in Canada to the border of Mexico. The world record is held by American Matthew Lee and stands at 17 days. The race was put on hold after Cracknell received life-threatening injuries after being knocked from his bicycle in America while training.[citation needed] In 2013, Fogle and Cracknell teamed up again for their third and final expedition across the Empty-quarter of Oman for a new BBC Two series.[citation needed]

Mount Everest[edit]

On 16 May 2018, Fogle summited Mount Everest, completing the climb over a six-week period whilst accompanied by two sherpa guides and Kenton Cool.[19] His trek also included former Olympic cyclist Victoria Pendleton, who abandoned her attempt due to severe altitude sickness. A film Our Mount Everest Challenge (The Challenge: Everest) documented by CNN, aired in June 2018, to highlight environmental issues around mountains in his new role as UN patron of the wilderness. The whole project was made possible by Fogle's good friend, Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein of Jordan, in memory of her father alongside raising awareness and money for The Red Cross.[20][21]


Fogle has written ten books; The Teatime Islands (2004) in search of the remaining islands in the British Empire in which he travels to Saint Helena, Ascension Island, the Falkland Islands, the British Indian Ocean Territories and Tristan da Cunha. He also tried to visit Pitcairn Island by private yacht, but when the inhabitants learned that he was a journalist they refused to let him land. Fogle claims that they suspected that he was a spy, and after six hours of interrogation he was refused permission to visit and deported. He was also accused of attempting to smuggle a breadfruit on to the island.[22] The book was short-listed for the WHSmith's people's award for Best Travel Book.

He has also written Offshore (2006), published by Penguin Books, in which he travelled around Britain in search of an island of his own.[23] He visited the Principality of Sealand and attempted to land on Rockall in the North Atlantic.[citation needed] In 2006 he published The Crossing, published by Atlantic books and co-written with Cracknell followed their Transatlantic rowing bid.[citation needed] In 2009, The Race to the Pole was published by Macmillan and spent ten weeks in the best-seller list.[citation needed] His seventh book Labrador was released in 2015. In it, he explores the origin, characteristics and exploits of the breed.

In 2016, Land Rover: The Story of the Car that Conquered the World was published.[24] English: A Story of Marmite, Queuing and Weather, which was published in 2017, examines the English national character.[25] He published his tenth book, Up, in October 2018. Co-written with his wife, Marina, Up documents his planning, training and eventual summit of Mount Everest.[26]

In 2019 Fogle launched a children's book series, co-written by best-selling children's author Steve Cole (author) and illustrated by Nikolas Ilic. Inspired by Fogle's real-life encounters with animals, the series follows the character of Mr Dog and his many sidekicks and friends.[27] Between March 2019 and January 2020, four Mr Dog books were published, with two more billed for late 2020.[28]

Fogle writes a weekly Country Diary for the Sunday Telegraph and is a regular columnist for The Daily Telegraph and travel writer for The Independent and has contributed to the Evening Standard, The New York Times, the Sunday Times and Glamour magazine. He has interviewed Gordon Brown and Prince William for the Mail on Sunday's LIVE magazine. He is guest director of Cheltenham Literary Festival and a regular at the Hay-on-Wye festival.


Fogle speaking at the Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference in London in 2018

Fogle is the UN Patron of the Wilderness, a role that sees him highlight the pressure and impact on the Earth's wildest corners. His aim is to focus more attention on the conservation cause and inspire greater global action to ensure our actions do not damage the environment.[29]

He is the President of the Campaign for National Parks.[30] Fogle is also: an ambassador for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Tusk; a supporter of the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme, and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. He is a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.[31] He is also a patron for the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, the Prince's Trust, the Royal Parks Foundation, Child Bereavement UK and ShelterBox.

Alongside the historian Philippa Gregory, Fogle is a patron of the UK Chagos Supporters Association, fighting for the islanders' rights to return to the British Indian Ocean Territory. He has described "the story of the Chagos islanders' treatment at the hands of the UK government" as "one for which I am ashamed to be British [...] a story of deceit [... which has] shaken my very principles on conservation and democracy".[32]

In August 2014, Fogle was one of 200 public figures who were signatories to a letter to The Guardian expressing their hope that Scotland would vote to remain part of the United Kingdom in September's referendum on that issue.[33]

On 11 May 2020 Fogle announced that his Twitter account would henceforth be donated to a different charity on a rolling, weekly basis.[34] The first charity selected was WECare, a UK and Sri Lankan registered veterinary charity. The repurposing of Fogle's Twitter account followed an incident of widespread trolling of Fogle following his suggestion of a nationwide sing-along to mark the 94th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II on Tuesday 21 April 2020.[35]


Year Title Role Channel
2000–2001 Castaway 2000 Participant BBC One
2001–2009, 2014–2015, 2017–2018 Countryfile Co-presenter
2001–2009, 2016–present Animal Park Co-presenter BBC One/BBC Two
2002–2007 One Man and His Dog Presenter BBC Two
2003 Big Screen Britain Presenter
2003 Death by Pets Presenter
2004 The Sand Marathon Presenter BBC Two
2005–2006 Animal Park: Wild in Africa Co-presenter
2006 Through Hell and High Water Co-presenter BBC One
2006, 2007–2008 Crufts Co-presenter BBC Two
Cash in the Attic Co-presenter BBC One
2007 Animal Park: Wild on the West Coast Co-presenter BBC Two
2007–2009 Extreme Dreams with Ben Fogle Presenter
2009 On Thin Ice Co-presenter
2009–2010 Country Tracks Co-presenter BBC One
2010 Ben Fogle's Escape in Time Presenter BBC Two
2010 Make Me A New Face: Hope For Africa's Hidden Children Presenter
2010 Prince William's Africa Presenter Sky1
2011 The Secrets of Scott's Hut Presenter BBC Two
2011 The World's Most Dangerous Roads[36] Co-presenter
2012 Swimming with Crocodiles Presenter
2012 Lonely Planet's Year of Adventures Presenter Travel Channel
2013— Ben Fogle: New Lives in the Wild Presenter Channel 5
2013–2016 Countrywise Co-presenter ITV
2013 Ben Fogle's Animal Clinic Presenter Channel 5
2013–2014 Harbour Lives Presenter ITV
2014 Trawlermen's Lives Presenter
2013-2024 Ben Fogle: New Lives in the Wild Presenter Channel 5
2015 Ben Fogle: The Great African Migration Presenter Channel 5
2016 Coastal Walks with My Dog Co-presenter Channel 4
2016 Taskmaster Cameo Dave
2017, 2018 Walks with My Dog Co-presenter More4
2018 Britain's Favourite Dogs: Top 100 Co-presenter ITV
2018 Our Everest Challenge Presenter ITV
2020, 2022 New Lives in the Country[37] (previously known as Ben Fogle: Make A New Life In The Country)[38] Presenter Channel 5
2020-21 For The Love Of Britain[39] Co-presenter ITV
2021 Inside Chernobyl with Ben Fogle[40] Presenter Channel 5
2021, 2023 Scotland’s Sacred Islands With Ben Fogle[41] Presenter BBC One
2022 Falklands War: The Forgotten Battle[42] Presenter ITV
Ben Fogle & the Lost City[43] Presenter Channel 5
Lost Worlds with Ben Fogle[44] Presenter
2023 Ben Fogle and the Buried City[45] Presenter
Endurance: Race to the Pole[46] Himself
2024 Into the Congo with Ben Fogle[47] Himself

Personal life[edit]

In 2006, Fogle married Marina Charlotte Elisabeth,[48] daughter of Jonathan Hunt (son of John, Baron Hunt of Fawley) and Monika (daughter of Herbert Kuhlmann, of Schloss Urstein, Salzburg, Austria).[49][50] Their first child, a boy named Ludovic Herbert Richard Fogle, was born in 2009.[51] Their second child, a girl named Iona, was born in 2011. In 2014, they had a stillborn son, Willem; Marina also nearly died after suffering an acute placental abruption at 33 weeks.[52][53]

While filming a series of Extreme Dreams in Peru in 2008, Fogle contracted leishmaniasis, which left him bedridden for three weeks on his return home. He was treated at London's Hospital for Tropical Diseases.[54] Fogle went on to make a documentary, Make Me a New Face, about children in Ethiopia suffering from flesh-eating bacteria called noma. The documentary was broadcast on BBC Two in 2010.[6]

Fogle was awarded an honorary doctorate of letters by the University of Portsmouth in 2007.[55]

His waxwork was recently unveiled at Madame Tussauds. He was awarded the Freedom of the City of London in 2013. Fogle has had an acting cameo on the television programme Hotel Babylon.

On 20 February 2013, BBC Newsbeat published an article stating that he had claimed that his drink had been spiked at a pub in Gloucestershire. He described the effects as making him try to jump out of a window, and he subsequently spent a night in hospital.[56]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [full citation needed] "England & Wales Births 1837–2006".
  2. ^ a b Staff (n.d.). "Ben Fogle : Biography". Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  3. ^ "". Archived from the original on 26 July 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  4. ^ a b Vallely, Paul (14 January 2006). "Ben Fogle: Action man". The Independent. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  5. ^ "Chat with Ben Fogle! | Mayhem! Magazine". Archived from the original on 9 September 2013. Retrieved 10 August 2013.
  6. ^ a b "BBC Two - Make Me a New Face: Hope for Africa's Hidden Children". BBC. Retrieved 7 January 2024.
  7. ^ "BBC Two - Swimming with Crocodiles, Australia". BBC. Retrieved 8 January 2024.
  8. ^ "Sky's Storm City". Tees Barrage International White Water Centre. Retrieved 8 January 2024.
  9. ^ "Ben Fogle lands US TV role to highlight UK". The Independent. 3 February 2011. Retrieved 8 January 2024.
  10. ^ "New Lives in the Wild". Retrieved 7 January 2024.
  11. ^ Ben Fogle's 'New Lives In The Wild' & The People He's Met Living Off The Grid | Good Morning Britain, retrieved 7 January 2024
  12. ^ Bryony Gordon (8 October 2008). "James Cracknell's Race to the South Pole – James Cracknell Should Probably Be Spending This Christmas at Home with His Wife, Beverley Turner, Who Will Be Six Months Pregnant with Their Second Child by Then". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  13. ^ "On Thin Ice". BBC. April–May 2011. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
  14. ^ [dead link] [1][permanent dead link]. Sparks.
  15. ^ "Team QinetiQ conquer the South Pole". QinetiQ Group plc. Archived from the original on 9 November 2013. Retrieved 8 July 2008.
  16. ^ Rouse, Beverley; Fentiman, Paula (23 January 2009). "Pole race Brits beaten by Norwegians - again". The Independent. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  17. ^ "Cornishman completes gruelling endurance race to South Pole". This Is Cornwall. Archived from the original on 8 July 2013. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
  18. ^ "Network TV BBC Week 26: Unplaced". BBC Press Office. 29 October 2014. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  19. ^ Fogle, Ben (2018). Up: My life journey to the top of Everest. William Collins. ISBN 978-0008319182.
  20. ^ Cohen, Claire (11 December 2017). "Exclusive: Victoria Pendleton and Ben Fogle on why they have joined forces to conquer Mount Everest". The Telegraph – via
  21. ^ "Adventurer Ben Fogle completes Mount Everest climb". The Guardian. Press Association. 16 May 2018.
  22. ^ Would I Lie To You?, Series 4 Episode 4
  23. ^ Fogle, Ben (12 June 2008). "Joseph Haschka's review of Offshore: In Search of an Island of My Own". Retrieved 7 April 2014.
  24. ^ Land Rover: The Story of the Car that Conquered the World; Fogle, Ben; William Collins; 2016; 336 pages; ISBN 978-0008194222
  25. ^ Hirsch, Afua (19 October 2017). "English by Ben Fogle review – Marmite, queuing and weather". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  26. ^ Fogle, Ben (2018). Up: My life journey to the top of Everest. William Collins. ISBN 978-0008319182.
  27. ^ "Ben Fogle bookshop". Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  28. ^ "". Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  29. ^ "UN Environment announces Ben Fogle as new United Nations Patron of the Wilderness". 4 October 2017.
  30. ^ "Ben Fogle to fight National Park cause". Campaign for National Parks. 17 July 2007. Archived from the original on 1 February 2009.
  31. ^ "Our Members". The Royal Geographical Society. Archived from the original on 13 May 2012. Retrieved 29 August 2012.
  32. ^ "The Chagos islanders' plight makes me ashamed to be British: The exiled islanders are desperate for the right to return to their homeland – but Britain seems determined to stop them". The Guardian. 21 May 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
  33. ^ "Celebrities' open letter to Scotland – full text and list of signatories". The Guardian. London. 7 August 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  34. ^ [2]. Ben Fogle (via Twitter).
  35. ^ "Ben Fogle hits back at 'mean' responses to royal birthday song suggestion". BBC News. London. 16 April 2020. Retrieved 21 May 2020.
  36. ^ "BBC Two – World's Most Dangerous Roads, Series 1, Peru". 19 July 2012. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
  37. ^ "New Lives in the Country". Retrieved 31 August 2022.
  38. ^ "Ben Fogle: Make A New Life In The Country". Retrieved 31 August 2022.
  39. ^ "For The Love Of Britain". Retrieved 13 December 2020.
  40. ^ "Inside Chernobyl with Ben Fogle". Retrieved 24 February 2021.
  41. ^ "Scotlands Sacred Islands With Ben Fogle "aims to focus on the power of the islands themselves to nurture and nourish religion and spirituality"". Retrieved 18 October 2023.
  42. ^ "Falklands War: The Forgotten Battle". Retrieved 29 March 2022.
  43. ^ "Ben Fogle & the Lost City". Retrieved 17 April 2022.
  44. ^ "Lost Worlds with Ben Fogle". Retrieved 20 October 2022.
  45. ^ "Ben Fogle and the Buried City". Retrieved 17 May 2023.
  46. ^ "Ben Fogle recreates 1900s Antarctica expedition in 'Endurance: Race to the Pole'". Retrieved 10 August 2023.
  47. ^ "Into the Congo with Ben Fogle". Retrieved 11 February 2024.
  48. ^ "Marina Charlotte Elisabeth FOGLE - Personal Appointments (free information from Companies House)". Retrieved 9 July 2019.
  49. ^ Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage, 2011, Debrett's Peerage Ltd, p. 807
  50. ^ County Life, vol. 162, 1977, p. 591
  51. ^ [3]. Ben Fogle (via Twitter).
  52. ^ Fogle, Marina (7 August 2018). "Marina Fogle: I took up running to deal with the death of my stillborn son". The Telegraph. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  53. ^ Fogle, Marina (23 January 2015). "Marina Fogle: 'I never saw my son open his eyes or smile, but at least I told him how much he was loved'". The Telegraph. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  54. ^ Staff (30 October 2008). "Fogle Catches a Flesh-Eating Bug". BBC News. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  55. ^ Communicator – The newsletter of the University of Portsmouth – Issue 19 – Autumn 2007 Archived 5 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine (PDF format).
  56. ^ Gladwell, Amy (20 February 2013). "Newsbeat – TV presenter Ben Fogle claims drink was spiked with drug". BBC. Retrieved 7 April 2014.

External links[edit]