A couple of weeks ago, the BBC chose us to visit their studios and help the Hairy Bikers make a pilot for their new show coming to your screens in the Autumn. It was really exciting, Simon’s mum – Susan, came down from Hereford. They tested the amazing Paella. Recipe Here. We didn’t want to be televised so this was a great day out to discover what happens behind the scenes of one of Britain’s much loved cookery shows, featuring its much loved Hairy Bikers.
The preceding evening, we went to White City and stayed at The Ramada Hotel (would recommend their dirty breakfast sausages – awesome) because we had to be at the studio at 7am. We couldn’t sleep due to the mega excitement – both of us had ‘Inception’ dreams where we both dreamed we woke up at 1030 and were late!
We had been liaising with the Assistant Producers, Ingrid and Ben for about two weeks prior, who are incredibly hardworking, friendly and very nice. They even visited us and Susan – all the way in Hereford; they asked us all sorts of questions about our past and present lives, really doing good research into who we are so that the Hairy Bikers and the Producers would know exactly who we were when they would meet us at The BBC.
And so the day started very early, we were transported to the studios. We had not been in there before, and we got to use the Green Room where they used to put Top Of The Pops guests! Imagine that – everyone from The Beatles, to The Rolling Stones, Duran Duran, to Madonna, to Kylie had been in there using the beaten up sofas and drinking tea. OK – probably something stronger…
We were prepped by Ben and Ingrid, with scripts and schedules. We even got our makeup done and someone who followed us all day making sure we were not shinny, our hair in place and our clothes good for continuity. And runners who always made sure we were neither thirsty nor hungry and treated us so nicely.
What I was really looking forward to was the food at the BBC Canteen – famous in many comedians speeches about how bad it is – made me wonder if its anything like our school dinners (which I loved). We got to eat in one called The Foyer. Simon and his mum, Susan, did well choosing the grilled tuna as that is just fried in the pan and done. I chose the lasagne. : ( and some tomato soup! Big mistake! Big! I think my school must have done really nice school dinners!
Nevertheless, it was such a great experience, to see how the Home Economist was at work and how the stage manager and production team dealt with everything.
What was great were those Hairy Bikers, Si and Dave were just fantastic. They are like they appear on TV – so generous in spirit and alive in conversation. We loved them and they loved Simon’s Paella.
We can’t reveal anything about the show or publish our photographs until after the first broadcast in the Autum.
Thank you, Ben Walton & Ingrid O’Reilly and everyone at The BBC and The Wonderful Hairy Bikers.