Next – a hedgehog snuffling! The lockdown lifeline capturing the sounds of Britain


Streams trickling, owls hooting, churchbells ringing … Radio Lento, a kitchen-table podcast created by first-timers, has scored a lockdown hit by bringing the great outdoors indoors. We meet the team

After months of confinement and inactivity, you might think you know the sound of absolutely nothing happening. But Radio Lento is determined to prove you wrong. The weekly podcast, which is becoming something of a lockdown hit, plays unedited recordings of rural environments across the UK – with no talking, no music and no other enhancements. It’s just the wind, the water and the cries of animals. Tides turn, owls call softly and the sound of far-off church bells carries over the fields.

“It’s for people who want to put the outside on their ears,” says co-founder Hugh Huddy. “It’s like photographs – but sound photographs.” Listening to such rich soundscapes instils a sense of peace, says Huddy, who calls the result “visceral relaxation – your body letting go but your brain switching on”. Lento has now clocked up more than 14,000 downloads since it launched in March, an astonishing result for a kitchen-table podcast created by first-timers.

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