Big, blonde-bearded Simon King from the North-East and fellow biker Dave Myers from Barrow-in-Furness both worked in some unusual places before coming together to form ‘The Hairy Bikers’.
Whilst their underlying passion for food continued to grow, Simon worked as a first assistant director and locations manager for film and television productions (including the Harry Potter series of films), while Dave was busy working as a furnaceman in a steelworks to finance his degree and postgraduate studies in Fine Arts at Goldsmiths.
Dave later joined the BBC as a make-up artist, specialising in prosthetics. He went on to work on numerous feature films and high-profile television series’, before meeting his foodie friend and biker pal, Si on the set of a Catherine Cookson drama. Working together, they realised their shared appreciation for both motorbikes and food…and so The Hairy Bikers were born.
For BBC2 they have made two series’ of THE HAIRY BIKERS’ COOKBOOK, a third series called THE HAIRY BIKERS RIDE AGAIN, a one-off special, THE HAIRY BIKERS COME HOME and the four-part series THE HAIRY BAKERS, which won audiences of over four million viewers. This was rounded off with a one hour HAIRY BAKERS CHRISTMAS SPECIAL drawing audiences of around 5 million. Meanwhile Si and Dave came a creditable second on THE WEAKEST LINK.
The last three years have been busy for both, with a giant 30 part series for BBC2 called THE HAIRY BIKERS’ FOOD TOUR OF BRITAIN followed by THE HAIRY BIKERS TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS and two major prime time series of MUMS KNOW BEST for BBC2. THE HAIRY BIKERS’ COOK OFF – mixing cooking and celebrity chat – screened on BBC2 last autumn and ran every weekday afternoon for eight weeks. The boys have just completed production on MEALS ON WHEELS (4 x 60 mins) which will screen on BBC2 this autumn, and are currently on location in Europe filming BAKEATION, a major new series for BBC2 Daytime Television. They are also shooting a Christmas special.
In early July the Hairies brought out a range of chilled prepared meals across Tesco stores, to be followed by other major retailers in the autumn, using some of their favourite recipes – with a twist.
The Hairy Bikers have written six books to date, two published by Michael Joseph/Penguin, and four best-selling titles by Orion Books. They are now the third most popular cookery writers after Jamie and Nigella. Dave and Si are both Members of the Food Writers’ Guild.