Hovis ‘boy on the bike’ ad returns to TV screens

The Hovis ‘Boy on the Bike’ advert is set to return to UK television screens – 46 years after it originally aired.

Directed by Ridley Scott in 1973, the advert has been digitally remastered by Ridley Scott Associates and the British Film Institute (BFI) National Archive before appearing on ITV tonight (3 June).

The revamp included stabilising and colour correcting the image while a re-recording of Dvorak’s New World Symphony by a new generation of the Ashington Colliery brass band has been added.

Set in post-war Britain, the advert sees a boy pushing his bread delivery bike up the steep Gold Hill in Shaftesbury, Dorset, before free-wheeling down the hill while narration of ‘ ’twas like taking bread to top of the world – ’twas a grand ride back though’ plays over the top.

“The values of our brand have never been more relevant, so we decided to remaster and relaunch our ‘Boy on the Bike’ advert,” said Jeremy Gibson, marketing director at Hovis.

“Despite being over 46 years old, recent research has found that the advert is as good today as it has always been and differs from adverts focusing on broader entertainment. In bringing the ‘Boy on the Bike’ back, we are re-engaging those who have loved this ad since 1973 and are introducing it to a new generation through numerous digital channels.”

The boy on the bike has made several re-appearances to UK screens including in an advert in 2017 which saw the then 58-year-old original ‘boy on the bike’ actor Carl Barlow finally ride up the cobbled hill on an electric bike.

“This advert and Hovis have been such a huge part of my life and I am delighted it is coming back to the small screen,” said Barlow.

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