Ray Mears returns to our screens this week, when he heads to the often brutal landscape of the Australian Outback – but who exactly is he? And how did he help in the Raoul Moat manhunt?
What are his credentials? And does he have a wife?
Here’s everything you need to know about the survival expert!
Who is Ray Mears?
Ray is a British woodsman, instructor, businessman, author and TV presenter.
He’s a worldwide expert in bushcraft having spent most of his life learning his craft.
He runs his own school where you too can learn from his vast experience.
Ray became famous for his TV shows about bushcraft and survival techniques.
Think of him like a less posh Bear Grylls.
Ray is best known for his TV series including Ray Mears’ Bushcraft.
He’s also fronted Ray Mears’ World of Survival, Extreme Survival, Survival with Ray Mears, Wild Britain with Ray Mears and Ray Mears Goes Walkabout.
How old is Ray?
Raymond Paul Mears was born on February 7 1964.
He is currently 57 years old.
Ray grew up on the North Downs, in Southern England.
He attended Downside Preparatory School in Purley and then Reigate Grammar School, where he was a member of the naval cadre of the Combined Cadet Force.
His ambition was to join the Royal Marines, but he could not meet the eyesight requirements for entry.
Is Ray Mears married?
Ray’s first wife Rachel tragically died of breast cancer in 2006, when she was just 50.
Ray and Rachel met in 1992 when she attended one of his five-day survival courses.
The couple lived in Eastbourne, East Sussex, with her two adult children.
They married in 2005, and she died a year later.
Ray currently lives in Sussex with his second wife Ruth and his stepson.
Ray’s serious accident
Ray barely escaped with his life after being involved in a serious accident while filming a documentary in Wyoming in 2005.
He and his camera crew were travelling in a helicopter when it hit the ground during a steep low level turn, and broke apart, rolling to a stop.
The fuel tank was ruptured in the accident and escaping fuel covered Ray and the crew.
Luckily a fire did not break out.
Ray escaped the wreckage uninjured and assisted in the rescue of another crew member who was badly hurt.
Did Ray really help track down Raoul Moat?
Ray helped Northumbria Police track fugitive killer Raoul Moat in July 2010.
Raoul had fled his temporary tent-based shelter in the village of Rothbury.
He had killed one person and wounded two others in a two-day shooting spree in July 2010.
Australian Wilderness with Ray Mears
Ray travels to the Australian wilderness in this repeated documentary series.
He heads deep into the Australian Outback to discover how both people and animals have developed ways to thrive in otherwise challenging conditions.
He begins in Western Australia where, 20 million years ago, the sea bed erupted to create the great limestone cliffs of Ningaloo.
Amid the rocks, the presenter encounters the fossils of giant prehistoric sharks, before swimming with their modern descendants – the whale sharks – out on Ningaloo reef.
Rather him than us!
Australian Wilderness with Ray Mears airs at 7.30pm on ITV on Tuesday February 16 2021.
What do you think? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix.