Ray is an English woodsman, instructor, author and TV presenter. He is best known for the TV series’ Ray Mears’ Bushcraft, Ray Mears’ World of Survival, Extreme Survival, Survival with Ray Mears, Wild Britain with Ray Mears and Ray Mears Goes Walkabout.
He started his bushcraft company aged 19 and his first book, The Survival Handbook, was published in 1990. Mears has continued to publish books, both standalone works, and as accompaniments to his TV series.
Over the past two decades the name Ray Mears has become recognised throughout the world as an authority on the subject of Bushcraft and Survival. Ray has spent his life learning these skills and is truly a master of the subject he calls Wilderness Bushcraft.
He has made a number of series for BBC television, visiting various parts of the world and covering such topics as bushcraft and survival skills, the traditional culture of indigenous peoples, and the achievements of noted explorers. In his programmes he demonstrates his knowledge of the wild, how to find food from seeds, berries, roots and other growing things, and how to survive by constructing temporary shelters, fires and canoes from natural materials.
In September 2007, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Oxford Brookes University, and in the same year he began to deliver public lectures across the United Kingdom on his experiences in front of and behind the lens.
In 2009 he was approached by ITV to present a planned revival of its long-running nature documentary series Survival. The resulting three-part series was rebranded Survival with Ray Mears and broadcast on ITV1 in 2010. Each episode followed Mears as he used his tracking skills to locate bears, wolves and leopards.
Ray founded Woodlore, the School of Wilderness Bushcraft in 1983 and has been teaching ever since, as he puts it, “to enable others to drink at the well of Bushcraft”.
Ray has developed an excellent reputation on the after dinner circuit with his fascinating insight into indigenous peoples and survival skills.