Dave Myers: 'Proud’ 20,000 Bikers Complete 'Dave Day’ Tribute Ride

video title, The bikers roared into the barrow-in-furnace as they finished the ride

  • author, Pamela Dickel & Jenny Dennett
  • stock, BBC News, North East and Cumbria

Thousands of motorcyclists have turned out for the end of a giant ride from London to Cumbria to celebrate the life of hairy biker Dave Myers.

The TV chef died of cancer in February aged 66.

’Dave Day’ saw a huge commemorative procession of bikers from the capital to Myer’s seaside home town of Barrow-in-Furness.

Organizers said nearly 20,000 people rode into the country – the distance between the first and last biker being about 25km (16 miles).

Fellow hairy biker Si King addressed the crowd waiting to greet the bikers: „Thank you. You’ve made David Myers very proud.”

His words drew cheers, and Myers’ widow Lily said: „Dave was always a Barrowian at heart, he loved Barrow and he wanted to put Barrow on the map.

„Today, beyond his grave, he has done it again.”

image caption, Thousands of bikers joined the Hairy Bikers Chi King to pay tribute to Dave Myers
image caption, Chi King told the crowd: „We were all in tears, not an eye was dry.”
image caption, A crowd of bikers gathered at the end of the ride in Barrow

A spectator, Mary, watched the procession from a bridge near the Burton service: “40 miles from the finish point, the atmosphere was beautiful, warm and emotional to see so many bikers.

„We were delighted to wave them off and welcome them to our beautiful county of Cumbria.”

Organizers said the service station was closed due to the high number of passengers.

The procession had planned to stop there for a break, but instead headed straight for the barrow.

Another observer said it was an „absolutely extraordinary sight” and that „it took about an hour and a half for the bikes to pass us from the first of the group to the last”.

image source, South Shore Productions/PA

image caption, Si King (left) took part in the ride for his friend and television partner

As the riders set off on Saturday morning, fellow Hairy biker C King described it as „amazing” and „a celebration of the best friend I’ve lost”.

Many of those gathered at the starting point, the Ace Cafe in north London, wore Hawaiian shirts.

King said of the crowd: “Everybody has that lovely Dave sartorial elegance, which means the silly shirt.

„Some of them are specially printed, which is remarkable.”

’Annoyingly Positive’

He added: „You never know how these things are going to affect you. This is a celebration of Dave’s life.

„That’s why we’re here, because he was so annoyingly positive all the time. We love him, that’s why we’re here.”

Before the show, Ms Myers said: „People come from all over the country. We have people from Texas, Malaysia, all over Europe.

„Oh, it’s lovely. It helps me get through my grieving process because it makes me realize that I’m not alone.

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image caption, Stopped at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull

Jason Woodcock, who organized Dave Dave, said the idea arose at Myers’ funeral, for which Lily asked him to „get two bikes together”.

„The idea came during the conversation that they came to the funeral, had a few beers like you do, and then went on a memorial ride.”

image caption, People gathered along the route and cheered the procession

As the procession ends on Saturday, the celebrations will take center stage Barrow Town Hall Performances include stalls from local vendors who have worked with Hairy Bikers on various projects and a memorial service.

The event will raise funds for the NSPCC Childline and The Institute of Cancer Research, with donations split equally between the two charities, organizers said.

image caption, Memorial ride route with scheduled stops

To mark the day, staff and pupils from Greengate Junior School in Barrow dressed up as Myers.

Participants wore fake beards and moustaches, as well as waistcoats worn by chefs.

Dylan, 10, said his mustache was itchy, while teacher Stephen Lee Myers said it was a Barovian treasure.

„It’s really good to focus on the positives of Barrow. And it’s a wonderful place,” he added.

image caption, Pupils and staff at Greengate Junior School in Barrow dressed up as Dave Meyers for their Dave Day celebrations

People travel from all over the world to participate in this event.

Dan Meyers, from Fleetwood, near Blackpool, lives in Malaysia most of the year.

She decided to come back to England especially for the celebration.

“Dave passed away while we were in Malaysia, so we decided to hold a candlelight vigil for him at a local Buddhist temple.

“We watched every episode [of the Hairy Bikers]We have all the cookbooks,” she said.

Ms Meyers arrived in Barrow on Friday and said the atmosphere was electric.

image source, Dawn mayors

image caption, Don Meyers has flown in from Malaysia to participate in Dave Day

Kenny Carrington, 70, travels from France on Friday and rides all the way from Ace Cafe to Barrow.

Mrs Carrington’s husband of 35 years, Chris, a biker, died of cancer last June.

„Chris would have loved to have done this ride for my soul mate, Dave Myers,” he said.

image source, You have Carrington

image caption, Kenny Carrington travels from France to ride in memory of her late husband Chris

Meanwhile, locals helped riders struggling to find somewhere to stay by offering their spare rooms, caravans and even their backyards.

Tim Walker offered his garden for people to camp at Askham-in-Furness.

“We thought, we have a lot of room [in the garden]. We have got some tents and some spare rooms,” he said.

Mr Walker and his wife also plan to provide breakfast for their eight guests.

He didn’t want people to pay to stay at his property and instead asked people to „drop a donation in the bucket.”

image caption, Tim Walker offered his garden for people to camp at Askham-in-Furness

Barrow Town Councilor Dani Petrova said of Myers: “He was a normal lad from Barrow who made us all proud.

He said he was „absolutely outraged” by the reaction to Dave Day.

„The people of Barrow are what make Barrow beautiful, and Dave is one of us.”

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