Police have hailed the 20,000 motorcyclists who rode across the country in memory of Hairy Biker Dave Myers after the huge tribute went ahead without trouble. 

Yesterday, Dave’s widow Lili and his old pal Si King led thousands of bikers to Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria after they started the journey in London in honour of the TV star who died in February from cancer aged 66.

The event, named Dave Day, saw an estimated 20,000 grieving motorcyclists ride the 36-mile-long procession.

Cumbria Police said that there was a ‘great turnout’ and thanked everyone involved for driving safely. 

They added that ‘no major incidents’ took place and have urged people to drive safely today as they anticipate many will be returning home from Dave Day. 

The bikers, led by Si King, stopped at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull on their way to Barrow-in-Furness yesterday

The bikers, led by Si King, stopped at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull on their way to Barrow-in-Furness yesterday

Dave Day, saw an estimated 20,000 grieving motorcyclists ride the 36-mile-long procession

Dave Day, saw an estimated 20,000 grieving motorcyclists ride the 36-mile-long procession

Dave's wife Lili joined Si on the back of his bike when the convoy stopped off in Lancashire

Dave’s wife Lili joined Si on the back of his bike when the convoy stopped off in Lancashire 

Superintendent Andy Wilkinson, Cumbria Constabulary, said: ‘There was a great turnout yesterday for the motorcycle procession both from motorcyclists making their way to Barrow and local people attending to support them.

‘We estimate that approximately 20,000 motorcyclists attended yesterday, and I am pleased to say there were no major incidents on the road network.

‘A great deal of planning took place ahead of yesterday to ensure the safety of all involved. I would like to thank everyone for their safe manner of driving and working with ourselves and our partner agencies.

‘We anticipate our road network will be very busy once again today as people return home from yesterday’s Dave Day events. We would ask people to drive safely and allow extra time for their journeys in order to keep all road users safe.’

Thousands of people lined the streets yesterday and cheered as Si King led the procession of bikers into the town centre less than eight hours after they set off from the Ace Café in London.

Dave’s widow Lili yesterday praised the efforts of fellow motorcyclists who have so-far smashed fundraising targets for cancer and children’s charities, who will benefit from the event.

Jason ‘Woody’ Woodcock, the organiser of the Dave Day ride from London to Barrow said there could have been up to 30,000 riders involved in the last leg.

The bike convoy will pick up Dave's wife Lili, pictured left, who he met while filming the first series of his TV cookery and travel show while they were filming in Transylvania

The bike convoy will pick up Dave’s wife Lili, pictured left, who he met while filming the first series of his TV cookery and travel show while they were filming in Transylvania

Dave Myers, pictured left with his best friend and fellow Hairy Biker Si King, died of cancer in February

Dave Myers, pictured left with his best friend and fellow Hairy Biker Si King, died of cancer in February 

He said: ‘Everybody said it couldn’t be done. We would never be able to move all those people and keep to time. Yet we did it and not a minute late.

‘I am emotionally drained but really happy. I promised to put a few bikes together for Dave and thanks to the bike community and the people of Barrow we have done it.

‘It is amazing what can be done when people come together. The politicians should take note.’

Si King said: ‘It has been an overwhelming reception. It would have made Dave very proud.’

Lili, who road pillion on Woody’s bike for the leg from Knutsford, said: ‘Dave was always a Barrovian through and through. He wanted to put Barrow on the map and from beyond the grave, he has done it.’

Dave’s cousin, Marie, said the idea of the ride had come out of the funeral at Stafford.

She said: ‘That was a real celebration and when Lili talked to the bikers in the funeral escort, they discussed the idea. And when they put it on social media, the idea just took off.

Her friend Nicola Kell said: ‘It been amazing. The number of people who have turned out shows how much Dave meant to the town and how much Barrow meant to Dave.’

Marie and Nicola said they were determined to make Dave Day an annual event, built around a food festival.

Thousands of bikers gathered at the Ace Cafe on London’s North Circular Road at 7am yesterday morning to ride to Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria as part of ‘Dave Day’ to celebrate the life of the celebrity chef and motorcycle enthusiast. 

The Ace Cafe on London’s North Circular Road is the legendary destination for motorcyclists and other petrol heads who celebrate all things automotive. 

After Dave’s death earlier this year, organisers have since set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for NSPCC Childline and the Institute for Cancer Research in honour of him.

As of 6.10pm today, they had smashed the intended target of £15,000 with pledges of more than £57,000.  

A wide range of motorbikes took part in today's tribute to the late Hairy Biker

A wide range of motorbikes took part in today’s tribute to the late Hairy Biker 

More than £30 has been raised for charity in memorial of the late celebrity chef who died of cancer in February

More than £30 has been raised for charity in memorial of the late celebrity chef who died of cancer in February

Lili Myers, pictured with the red helmet, joined the convoy for the final blast into Barrow-in-Furness

Lili Myers, pictured with the red helmet, joined the convoy for the final blast into Barrow-in-Furness

Speaking to the BBC, Lili said the preparations for Dave Day have helped her recover from the loss of her husband. She said: ‘It’s endearing, it just helps me go through my process of grief because it just makes me feel that I’m not on my own with all this.

‘But at the same time, it is quite difficult because it reminds me every moment of what has happened.

‘He taught me so many things, to just live every moment to the fullest, don’t let anything bring you down.

‘We just had so many adventures together and that was fuelled by his creativity, fuelled by his energy.

‘He carried me a long way and he just gave that energy to me, and it just shows now after he has passed.’

The couple met in 2005 when Dave was staying at a hotel she was managing in Romania as the Hairy Bikers were filming their first series.

She praised fans of the duo who have travelled to the UK to take part in Dave Day.

She added: ‘It’s amazing – I am astounded, we have people coming from all over the country, we have people coming from Texas, from Malaysia, from all over Europe. The local companies, the local businesses have organised charity donations so we don’t know how much is going to be raised, but I hope as much as possible.’

The large group of bikers left London's Ace Cafe at 8am to embark on the 300-mile ride

The large group of bikers left London’s Ace Cafe at 8am to embark on the 300-mile ride

Some motorcyclists travelled from across the globe in order to take part in today's ride

Some motorcyclists travelled from across the globe in order to take part in today’s ride

Thousands of motorcyclists took part in today's Dave Day raising money in memory of the late Hairy Biker Dave Myers

Thousands of motorcyclists took part in today’s Dave Day raising money in memory of the late Hairy Biker Dave Myers 

The convoy travelled up the A40/M40 before heading on the M6 towards Cumbria

The convoy travelled up the A40/M40 before heading on the M6 towards Cumbria 

Members of the public queued up on bridges over the motorway to support the riders

Members of the public queued up on bridges over the motorway to support the riders

Locals in Barrow-in-Furness have offered accommodation to those on the ride

Locals in Barrow-in-Furness have offered accommodation to those on the ride

Bridges over the M6 and A590 to Barrow were full of onlookers waiting for the cavalcade of bikes to pass.

In Barrow itself, hundreds of people gathered to welcome the bikers outside the gothic Town Hall and to enjoy live music and children’s entertainers in the sunshine. There was a real carnival atmosphere.

And former friends and contacts of Dave Myers were doing their bit to honour him and raise money for charity.

Wendy Gunning, who runs a Wool shop in the town’s indoor market, beloved by Dave, was frantically crocheting pies.

‘David was a customer for years and I knew his family. He always supported local businesses.

‘His favourite food was Green’s Pies so I decided to crochet pies while my husband Stephen, a biker joined the ride at Burton in Kendal.

‘I haven’t been able to keep up with demand. It’s been mad, as I sold more than 100 at £5 a piece already. I will also be sending them out.

‘All the profit goes to his charities. He was such a nice guy and I wanted to get involved Dave Day.

‘It has been fantastic how many people have come together to commemorate Dave Myers.’

A book of remembrance was organised by Aphinya Tarnprasart, known to Dave and all her customers as Tuk, purveyor of the Thai food Dave loved.

Tuk befriended him as a customer before she new he was a famous TV chef. She ended up cooking the food for his wedding with Liliana.

‘Dave Day is really good for the town. He always wanted to mention he came from Barrow. Even now he has passed away he will be thinking he is continuing to advertise Barrow. I am so happy his dream to promote Barrow carries on’ she adds.

The riders regrouped at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull

The riders regrouped at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull

The bikers stopped at the Welcome Break service station on the M40 at 9am. 

From there, they are went to the National Motorcycle Museum at 10.45 in Birmingham. After that, the motorcyclists stopped at the Moto Services in Knutsford at 12.30pm. 

The penultimate stop will be at the Moto Services in Burton-in-Kendal before arriving in Barrow-in-Furness at 4pm. 

On the route, the bikers will pick up Dave’s widow Lili, who he met during the first series of the Hairy Bikers in Transylvania. 

It is estimated that as many as 20,000 motorcyclists could participate in today's charity ride

It is estimated that as many as 20,000 motorcyclists could participate in today’s charity ride

Dave Day has been organised in his home town of Barrow-in-Furness on Saturday to celebrate his life.

His tribute day will include a motorcycle procession from London to Barrow-in-Furness, a music concert and a service of remembrance.

The day will raise funds for cancer charities and children’s charity the NSPCC.

King, speaking to BBC Breakfast from north-west London on Saturday morning, said the event would be a ‘celebration of my best friend that we’ve lost’ and it will be ‘very emotional’.

Speaking of the crowd of bikers gathered in Hawaiian shirts around him, King said it was ‘pretty amazing’, adding: ‘Everybody’s got that lovely Dave sartorial elegance about them, ie dodgy shirt. Some of them have had them specially printed, it’s remarkable. I mean, you wouldn’t buy a second-hand car from them, would you?’

The forecourt of the Ace Cafe in London was packed this morning ahead of the ride

The forecourt of the Ace Cafe in London was packed this morning ahead of the ride

Hairy Biker Si King, pictured, who is taking part in Dave Day, a memorial bike ride for his late Hairy Biker co-star Dave Myers, praised the motorcycling community for their support

Some 20,000 motorcyclists are expected to take part in the ride from London to Barrow-in-Furness

Hundreds of bikers met up at the Ace Cafe in Stonebridge Park in north west London at 7am

Hundreds of bikers met up at the legendary London venue ahead of today's marathon ride

Hundreds of bikers met up at the legendary London venue ahead of today’s marathon ride

The convoy is travelling from the Ace Cafe in norrth London to Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria along the M40 and M6

The convoy is travelling from the Ace Cafe in norrth London to Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria along the M40 and M6

King added: ‘It’s a celebration of my best friend that we’ve lost. And, yeah, it is, it’s very emotional.

‘You never know how these things are going to impact you, you know, it is a celebration of Dave’s life.

‘That’s why we’re here because he was so irritatingly positive all of the time. And we love him and that’s why we’re here.’

King added he wants people to say they are having a ‘Dave day’ instead of a ‘great day’.

He said an estimated 20,000 people would take part in Dave Day.

King said cancer is a ‘ruthless disease’, adding: ‘It doesn’t care who it takes. And that’s part of the reason that we’re here.

‘We’re all like-minded folk, you know, and it’s diverse and it’s as varied as every motorcycle that you see, all the characters and personalities here are just great.

The riders have described today's event at 'Dave Day' in celebration of the late Hairy Biker

The riders have described today’s event at ‘Dave Day’ in celebration of the late Hairy Biker

The group are expected to make it to Cumbria by 4pm this afternoon

The group are expected to make it to Cumbria by 4pm this afternoon

The group, pictured here at the Hangar Lane Gyratory system on the North Circular Road were about to head north west along the A40

The group, pictured here at the Hangar Lane Gyratory system on the North Circular Road were about to head north west along the A40

The trip including a couple of stops is expected to take at least eight hours

The trip including a couple of stops is expected to take at least eight hours

‘That’s the whole thing about a journey, because motorcycling isn’t about A to B, it’s about the bit in the middle and that’s the bit of life that we all celebrate. That’s what it’s about.’

One of the bikers taking part in the day is Stan, who told BBC Breakfast he was diagnosed a year ago with cancer and said the day would be ‘phenomenal’.

Myers’s widow Lili Myers told BBC Breakfast: ‘We have people coming from all over the country. We have people coming from Texas, from Malaysia, from all over Europe.

‘Oh, it’s endearing. It just helps me go through my process of grief. Because it just makes me feel that I’m not on my own with all this.

‘He always cooked, that was his territory. I wasn’t allowed in the kitchen, just to clean the kitchen and, I tell you, he would cook for an hour, I will clean for two. He knew how to create a moment. That was his forte.’

Many of those attending today's event were wearing colourful shirts which were a favourite of the late TV chef

Many of those attending today’s event were wearing colourful shirts which were a favourite of the late TV chef

Jason Woodcock, Dave Day organiser, told BBC Breakfast: 'I went to see him the day before he passed. 'Lili asked me for a couple of bikes together for his funeral, which I did. Some of the guys that are here today were there as well. They got to the funeral, had a few beers as you would do. And then the idea came up during the conversation of let's do a memorial ride'

Jason Woodcock, Dave Day organiser, told BBC Breakfast: ‘I went to see him the day before he passed. ‘Lili asked me for a couple of bikes together for his funeral, which I did. Some of the guys that are here today were there as well. They got to the funeral, had a few beers as you would do. And then the idea came up during the conversation of let’s do a memorial ride’

People in Barrow-in-Furness have been inviting those involved in the ride to stay at their homes

People in Barrow-in-Furness have been inviting those involved in the ride to stay at their homes

Jason Woodcock, Dave Day organiser, told BBC Breakfast: ‘I went to see him the day before he passed.

‘Lili asked me for a couple of bikes together for his funeral, which I did. Some of the guys that are here today were there as well. They got to the funeral, had a few beers as you would do. And then the idea came up during the conversation of let’s do a memorial ride.’

He added the people in Barrow have been ‘amazing’, offering spare rooms and gardens for people to camp in as there is no accommodation left.

The main group, which included Dave’s partner and friend Si King, and his widow Lilliana, had set off from London at 8 a.m. for the 300-mile journey.

About 10,000 bikers set off from Ace Café in London past streets lined with well-wishers. Many of the riders were wearing Hawaiian shirts in tribute to Dave’s favoured form of dress.

Stop-offs along the route included the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham.

They met up with fellow bikers from Wales, Scotland and the North-East at Burton services on the M6 northbound between Lancaster and Kendal, before being escorted by the police in batches of 1,000 a time, along the A590 to Barrow in Furness.

Bikers also came from Malaysia, Texas, France and Portugal.

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