With a dream career almost cut short after a lorry crash - one of the stars of Channel 4’s new Shipping Wars UK has spoken to The Standard about the excitement of taking part in the show.
Essex woman Jemma Howdle, currently living in Boston, can be seen on the series Monday-Friday with her partner Stuart Barnes.
The series follows a group of delivery trucks as they criss-cross Britain, competing to collect and drop off unusual goods for the ‘eBay generation’.
The couple had worked as international lorry drivers for a number of years - travelling around Europe together to transport all manner of loads.
But Jemma’s dream job was nearly shattered last year when she suffered an epileptic fit on her own at the wheel - ending her driving career.
“I was so lucky not to have been killed or injured,” said Jemma, 31. “I just remember seeing a petrol tanker coming towards me then I blacked out. The next thing I know, a policeman was unstrapping my seatbelt and telling me ‘excuse me love, you’re in a bush’. I must have automatically turned to the left because if I had turned to the right I wouldn’t be here now.”
On the show, Stuart takes the reigns at the wheel of the articulated lorry with Jemma securing their unusual delivery jobs on eBay. The show has given her the chance to carry on with what she calls the ‘thrill of adventure on the road’.
”It was a fantastic experience, I really enjoyed it,” she added. “It was an experience I will never forget.”
Shipping Wars UK is screened on Channel 4 Monday-Friday at 4pm. It began on Monday and will run for four weeks.