REGULAR readers, or those who are best friends with Mr Google, will know I took a trip to The Grid earlier this year.
The nerve centre of TV series Spooks, it’s actually located in an old biscuit factory in south London.
With the new series starting on BBC1 next Tuesday, it’s time to begin running the cast interviews from that set visit.
The first – with Rupert Penry-Jones, who plays Adam Carter – is online here.
As ever, there wasn’t room in the feature to include all of the chat with Rupert.
I asked him, for example, about the dramatic climax to the last series.
It saw MI5 agents Adam and Ros (Hermione Norris) resurface in the nick of time after being trapped underwater at the Thames Barrier.
“It was quite scary,” confessed Rupert.
“The set was suspended above a water tank, so they would just lower us into the water and the water would rush in.
“And they had a mark on the set where they weren’t supposed to lower it past, so that we could still breathe – with divers underneath.
“But there were a couple of times when we literally had a tiny amount of space between the ceiling and the surface of the water.”
At one stage viewers saw a drowning Ros sink slowly away from Adam.
“We had to film that quite a few times. She had threads tied to her legs and a diver was pulling her.”
Thankfully, both actors lived to shoot another series.
Did that storyline – with London under threat of catastrophic flooding – make Rupert think twice about living in the capital?
“Absolutely, because that is something that could happen, if a major terrorist attack did blow up the Thames Barrier.
“But I wouldn’t move because of the terror threat, just because London’s the hectic life.”
Rupert, whose partner is actress Dervla Kirwan, added: “I can’t take it. I want to move to a little country house in the middle of nowhere.”
The new 10-part series of Spooks has one theme running through the entire season – Iran trying to arm itself with nuclear weapons.
It brought back memories of my first trip to North America in 1980, when the Iranian Hostage Crisis was at its peak.
Driving from New York to Toronto, one current single was a favourite on the radio playlists.
And it gave me a direct taste of how many Americans thought their nation’s foreign policy should be executed.
Performed by Vince Vance & The Valiants, the No 1 hit had the catchy title “Bomb Iran”.
Here’s a sample of the lyrics, sung to the tune of Barbara Ann by The Beach Boys:
“Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran. Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran…”
You get the idea.
They’re Out To Get Carter
Spooks Official Site
MI5 Official Site
BBC In Pictures: Iran Hostage Crisis
Vince Vance & The Valiants