Discovery+ Sets ‘Grand Designs’-Style Series ‘Heritage Rescue’ With BBC Star Nick Knowles

Nick Knowles

EXCLUSIVE: Discovery has set a marker down for the UK ambitions of its streaming service Discovery+ by luring BBC presenter Nick Knowles to host a series that has echoes of hit Channel 4 show Grand Designs.

Knowles, who presents the BBC’s long-running home transformation show DIY SOS: The Big Build, will host Heritage Rescue for Discovery+. The 12-part series is produced by Curve Media, the prolific Discovery supplier behind shows including Salvage Hunters.

Sources have described it as Grand Designs but for historical buildings in need of restoration. Each episode features a different project, and Knowles will follow the restoration work, showing the results, and diving into the history of the building.

Deadline understands that production is underway and will continue through to fall 2021. The series hopes to showcase some of the UK’s most impressive landmarks and historical structures.

Heritage Rescue is likely to be among Discovery+’s most ambitious originals to date, with previous commissions including Shearwater Media’s Faking It documentary brand, which launched last year Faking It: Jimmy Savile.

The company is increasingly making Discovery+ the hub of its originals since its British launch last October, though it will continue to commission for its UK channels. Equally, Discovery+ originals could also be shown on television.

For Knowles, Heritage Rescue represents another step away from his BBC work. ViacomCBS-owned Channel 5 announced this month that it has signed up the presenter for two series, working titled Nick Knowles: Your Life On Your Lawn and Nick Knowles’ Home Improvements.

The show also cements Curve Media’s relationship with Discovery after it secured 161 hours of commissions from the broadcaster last year. This included further series of Salvage Hunters and spinoffs, such as Salvage Hunters: Design Classics.

Curve is run by Rob Carey, the co-creator of History’s American Pickers, and Camilla Lewis, the former head of factual at Fremantle UK, which makes Grand Designs.

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