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Weekly launches ‘real life antidote’ to hit TV show

A weekly newspaper has turned the tables on a hit reality TV show which is filmed in the town by launching its own version – minus the fake tans and petty squabbling.

The Brentwood Gazette says ITV2’s docu drama The Only Way is Essex, which focuses on the hedonistic lifestyles of a group of young adults in the county, does not show the true face of the town.

So the paper has launched its own real life antidote to the likes of Mark Wright, Amy Childs and Sam Faiers who are regulars in the docu soap, which is about to start filming its second series.

It has chosen six residents of the town, pictured below on the Gazette’s front page, to appear in a weekly feature, The Only Way is Brentwood, to redress the balance and show what local people are really like.

Editor Nev Wilson, said: “People who live here all know what Brentwood is really like.

“To base a programme on fake tans and petty squabbling and jealousies between men and women – and then market it as real ¬- is not an accurate portrayal of the people of Brentwood.

“We think it’s time to redress the image that ITV is cashing in on, which is why we are launching The Only Way is Brentwood – our answer to ITV’s The Only Way is Essex. It’s time to celebrate our townsfolk and their interesting stories.

“Together with our Pride of Essex and Heart of the Community awards, the Gazette hopes our little attempt to bring some sparkle into Brentwood will give us all something to talk about – and show the true face of our town to the outside world.”

The paper will feature the ordinary lives of Richard, Sarah, Lin, Paul, Jo and Tracy each week.

In The Only Way is Essex, the lifestyles of a nightclub owner, a beautician, a glamour model and a wedding singer are among those portrayed, while Essex girl Denise Van Outen is the narrator.

The programme has been criticised for not being representative of the county but it has helped boost enquiries for weekend breaks in the area by 140pc.