Castaway Geoff Spice who marooned himself on an uninhabited Scottish island to give up smoking has become an international celebrity, even appearing on Ukrainian television.

The 57-year-old retired banker from Ashtead, who started smoking at the age of 13, has been on Sgarbhaigh, a 40 acre island with only sheep for company - apart from unwanted visitors.

The first to intrude on his solitude was a man in canoe who was followed by a television reporter and a cameraman from Ukraine who brought whisky, newspapers and crisps with them.

He wrote in a diary he is keeping for a national newspaper: “I felt sorry for them so I gave them an interview.

“I wish I hadn’t because I fear it will now encourage others and I don’t want to be disturbed while I am out here. I’m going to send anybody else away.”

Mr Spice hit headlines here and abroad when he announced that he intended to kick his 30-a-day habit by taking himself off to the island for a month.

He has been inundated with requests for interviews from journalists from round the world.

And so far it has it has been a gruelling experience with foul weather forcing him to retreat to his tent for two days, a stomach bug making life even more unpleasant for him as he deals with his cravings for a cigarette and bugs of other sorts including midges, earwigs and flying ants being in plentiful supply.

To add to his misery the batteries for his book reader and radio failed but a scheduled visit by sheep shearers came to his rescue.

They brought over a parcel from the landlady of the bed and breakfast where he stayed full of home made goodies. They also brought him some batteries, and some milk and coffee to help him through his ordeal.

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