ITV has confirmed that the new series of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! will be filmed in the UK because of the Covid-19 pandemic - the first time the reality competition has taken place away from its Australian Outback base.

A "ruined castle in the countryside" will be the 'home' away from home for the celebrity contestants on this year's Ant and Dec-hosted show.

"We announced last week that we were doing all we could to make the series and I'm thrilled that we can bring the show to viewers albeit not in the jungle," said ITV's Director of Television, Kevin Lygo. 

"We have a great team both on and off-screen and I know they will produce a hugely entertaining series."

Richard Cowles, Director of Entertainment at ITV Studios, added: "We pulled out all the stops to try and make the series happen in Australia. 

"Unfortunately, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and despite us looking at many different contingencies, it became apparent that it just wasn't possible for us to travel and make the show there. 

"However, we are all really excited about a UK version of I'm a Celebrity. While it will certainly be different producing the show from the UK, the same tone and feel will remain.

"Our celebrities will probably have to swap shorts for thermals but they can still look forward to a basic diet of rice and beans and plenty of thrills and surprises along the way."

Meanwhile, in a statement, the animal welfare group PETA said that the handling of animals in the show should be carefully monitored if the show's to be based in the UK.

One of the features of the show is that, quite often, contestants are set tasks that include eating and rummaging around with various creatures.

"I'm A Celebrity must change more than just continents - it needs to change its format," a representative told MirrorOnline.

"The show's been doing the same tired, tacky, and cruel stunts for years, ones it should not be able to get away with in the UK with the RSPCA watching.

"Coronavirus has taught us the devastating consequences of messing with wildlife, and ITV needs to heed that lesson."

ITV representatives declined to comment on the PETA statement.

Click here for more television news.