Harry Hill

Harry Hill
Harry Hill

Hill in Putney with The Caterers in 2006
Birth name Matthew Keith Hall
Born 1 October 1964 (1964-10-01) (age 47)
Woking, Surrey, England
Medium Stand-up, television, film
Nationality British
Years active 1992–present
Genres Improvisational comedy, Surreal comedy, Wit, Parody, Musical comedy, Insult comedy
Subject(s) Humanity, Pop culture, Television, World history
Influences Burt Kwouk, Ken Dodd
Influenced Paul Burling
Spouse Magda Archer (m. 1996–present) «start: (1996)»"Marriage: Magda Archer to Harry Hill" Location: (linkback://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Hill);
3 children
Notable works and roles Harry Hill's TV Burp
Comic Relief
Website www.harryhill.co.uk
BAFTA Awards
Best Entertainment Performance
2008, 2009 Harry Hill's TV Burp
Best Entertainment Programme
2008 Harry Hill's TV Burp
British Comedy Awards
Best Comedy Entertainment Programme
2006, 2008 Harry Hill's TV Burp
Best TV Comedy Entertainment Personality
2006, 2009 Harry Hill's TV Burp

Harry Hill (born Matthew Keith Hall on 1 October 1964),[citation needed] is a Perrier Award–winning English comedian, author and television presenter. A former medical doctor (who remains on the General Medical Council's List of Registered Medical Practitioners), Hill began his career in comedy with the popular radio show Harry Hill's Fruit Corner.


Personal life

Hill was born in Woking, Surrey[1] and spent part of his childhood living in Hong Kong where he attended Island School.[2] The family then moved to Staplehurst, Kent where Hill attended the local primary school.[3] He was educated at Cranbrook School in Kent and St George's Hospital Medical School before training in neurosurgery at the University of London. Hill worked as a house officer at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, before quitting the medical profession because he "didn't feel in control of what was happening".[4]

Hill married illustrator Magda Archer in 1996 in Wandsworth, London.[2] They have three daughters, all born in Kensington and Chelsea, London: Kitty Clover (born 1997), Winifred Millicent (born 1998) and Frederica Aster (born 2004).[5] Hill currently owns property in West Beach in the seaside town of Whitstable in Kent and has a house in South London.[citation needed]

In February 2006, Hill was a victim of identity theft; a sum of £280,000 was stolen from his bank account.[6] In September 2008, Hill worked with Fairtrade to release Harry's Nuts, a brand of fairtrade peanuts.[7]

He is known to have been a supporter for his namesake football club Harrow Hill F.C., (Also known as Harry Hill). In 2008 he was presented with a Harrow Hill badge, which he still wears to this day on episodes of TV Burp.



From 1997 Hill had his own Channel 4 television series called The Harry Hill Show (listed simply as Harry Hill on screen) which ran for three series. The show was essentially a reworking of the Radio series Harry Hill's Fruit Corner. Among the regular characters were Hill's big brother, 'Alan' (played by the comedian Al Murray) and his adopted son 'Little Alan' (played by Dr Matt Bradstock). Burt Kwouk appeared in many episodes of the Harry Hill Show and occasionally in Hill's major live standup shows. Kwouk played Harry's "Chicken Catcher" and each week he had an excuse as to why he has not yet captured a chicken, followed by a performance of the song Hey Little Hen. In later series Hill and Kwouk appeared in sketches as Karl Lagerfeld and Gianni Versace. Hill's screen wife Mai Sung also made appearances on the show, mainly around the theme of trying to steal Hill's bank savings book. Another favourite on the show was Stouffer the cat, a curious-looking cat glove puppet made of blue rubber, a fetish item bequested to Hall during a dispute[citation needed]. Stouffer normally sits in a throne supported by a rubber arm in the style of Rod Hull, and is employed to intimidate guests during Hill's standup routines and as part of a strange children's TV parody sketch on his TV show. Stouffer's catchphrases are "he got a big face" and "sorted — respect due". The end of each episode was supposed to include an event called "The Badger Parade", a parade of puppet badgers that included Gareth Southgate badger and Tasmin Archer badger, among others. But every week there would be some kind of problem resulting in the badgers being unable to perform. In place of the badger parade, Hill would usually sing a song, with a guest he had invited onto the show.

In 2001 Hill moved to ITV presenting an all-new show Harry Hill's TV Burp it has had ten series. The BAFTA award-winning show is a comic look at the week's television, showing clips from various UK television programmes and framing them with commentary or intercutting additional footage. Also broadcast on ITV1 was The All New Harry Hill Show, similar to his Channel 4 show, but with a bigger budget and more celebrity guests. Regular features included the Hamilton Challenge (featuring Neil and Christine Hamilton), and a Butterfly in Blue Jeans finale.

In 2005 Hill moved into new territory with Harry Hill's Shark Infested Custard, a 13-part show broadcast in the CITV children's television slot. While many of his previous characters including Stouffer and Garry Hill (Hill's fictional layabout son from his first marriage) remained, it also showcased several new characters including Speed Camera Boy, about an outsider who is half boy and half speed camera, and Evelynne Hussey and her Amazing Instruments. While the show featured a game show element, Help the Aged, it was very similar in structure to The Harry Hill Show. In this show he wore a pale yellow (custard-coloured) shirt with a giant collar instead of his usual white one.

Other projects

Hill's instantly recognisable voice has led to work in voice-over roles on television commercials such as the holiday adverts for Boots in 2004. Hill also provides the voice over for You've Been Framed and once sang a song entitled "Bring on the Branston!" for the Branston Pickle adverts. Hill has appeared on the BBC Radio 4 series I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. In 2002 Hill's first novel, Flight from Deathrow, was published. The novel is based around accounts of the unlikely antics of real-life celebrities and politicians as seen through the eyes of the storyteller, as he drifts in and out of a coma. His second book, Tim the Tiny Horse, was published in October 2006, and his third, The Further Adventures of the Queen Mum, in October 2007. Also available is Harry Hill's Fun Book, a Christmas spin-off from his Channel 4 TV show, Harry Hill's Whopping Great Joke Book (also available as an iPhone app[8]) and Tim the Tiny Horse At Large, which is the sequel to the first book. In October 2009, Ebury Press published Harry Hill's TV Burp Book, a tie-in to the popular television programme, which included comics, spoofs and pin ups. In November 2010, Harry was set to release his debut comic album 'Funny Times'.[9] The album has been preceded by the release of the single 'I Wanna Baby'. About the same time as 'Funny Times' was released, Harry Hill released 'Livin' the Dreem' a fictional account of his life in 2010, featuring references to pop culture in 2010.

He has his own comic strip in The Dandy, called Harry Hill's Real Life Adventures in TV Land, drawn by Nigel Parkinson. Hill was directly involved in its creation, and is co-credited alongside Parkinson and is now the voice of the Green Flag ant in the Green Flag commercials. Harry is also a supporter of Gloucestershire non-league side Harrow Hill F.C. and met their former chairman during a book-signing in Cheltenham. When it was mentioned that Harrow Hill's nickname was 'Harry Hill' Harry thought it hilarious and now wears a Harrow Hill F.C badge on his suit. He is currently starring in the Sky Atlantic sitcom This is Jinsy as Joon Boolay.[10]

Between October and December 2010, Hill starred in a weekly online comedy series on the ChannelFlip website, called Harry Hill's Little Internet Show.[11]


Hill has released a selection of DVDs, Videos and Audio Books, many of which feature recordings of his sell-out live tours. The first, entitled 'Live', was released in 1995, featuring a performance from The Queen's Theatre, London.


In 2003, Hill was listed in The Observer as one of the 50 funniest acts in British comedy. In a 2005 poll to find The Comedian's Comedian, he was voted amongst the top 50 comedy acts ever by fellow comedians and comedy insiders.[12] In 2007 he was voted number five on Channel 4's hundred greatest stand-ups. On 13 December 2006, he won two Highland Spring British Comedy Awards, over the favourites Ant and Dec, which Hill made light of in his acceptance speeches.[13] In 2008 he won two Baftas and another in 2009 for best Entertainment Performance. In 2009 he won two British Comedy Awards, making it his sixth award. He also won again in 2011, but was unable to be there and sent Wagbo to collect it on his behalf. He was also nominated for 3 other awards, including the People's Choice Award, which was won by Miranda Hart.

VHS and DVD releases

Stand-up shows

  • Live (16 October 1995)
  • Man Alive - Live (27 October 1997)
  • First Class Scamp - Live (16 November 1998)
  • Birdstrike! - Live (20 November 2000)
  • In Hooves - Live (21 November 2005)




  • Fruit Corner (2 October 1995)
  • Hooves (20 March 2006)
  • Man Alive (20 February 2007)
  • Flight from Deathrow (2 April 2009)
  • Livin' the Dream (4 November 2010)


  • Funny Times (29 November 2010)


  1. ^ "Woking Borough Council, Hall of Fame". http://www.woking.gov.uk/woking/people/halloffame. Retrieved 20 April 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Marriages and Births England and Wales 1984-2006". Findmypast.com. http://www.findmypast.com/BirthsMarriagesDeaths.jsp. Retrieved 15 June 2009. [dead link]
  3. ^ "TV Star Comedian Harry Hill returns to Staplehurst School!!". Staplehurst Primary School. http://www.staplehurstprimary.ik.org/gallery/1522665701.ikml. Retrieved 19 November 2010. [dead link]
  4. ^ "7 things you never knew about Harry Hill". Sunday Mercury. 2010-02-28. http://www.sundaymercury.net/entertainment-news/tv-news/2010/02/28/7-things-you-never-knew-about-harry-hill-66331-25928790/. Retrieved 2011-04-03. 
  5. ^ Smith, Aidan (16 January 2005). "Harry on Laughing - Scotland on Sunday". Scotlandonsunday.scotsman.com. http://scotlandonsunday.scotsman.com/ViewArticle.aspx?articleid=2595363. Retrieved 15 June 2009. [dead link]
  6. ^ Leyden, John (9 February 2006). "Harry Hill ID Fraud". Theregister.co.uk. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/02/09/harry_hill_id_fraud/. Retrieved 15 June 2009. 
  7. ^ "Harry nuts about fairtrade venture". The Press Association. 15 September 2008. http://ukpress.google.com/article/ALeqM5iF_y3zBSf43aCCXkH0b6UAb0H7VA. Retrieved 16 September 2008. [dead link]
  8. ^ "Harry Hill's Whopping Great Joke Book - The app for iPhone and iPod Touch". Harryhillsjokebookapp.com. http://harryhillsjokebookapp.com/. Retrieved 2011-10-24. 
  9. ^ "Hard Times For Harry". The Sun. 25th september 2010. http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/showbiz/bizarre/3152776/Harry-Hills-fantasic-new-album.html. Retrieved 27th september 2010. 
  10. ^ "Daily TV round-up – Harry goes drag in new comedy". Yahoo! TV. 2011. http://uk.tv.yahoo.com/news-extra/article/168245/daily-tv-round-upharry-goes-drag-in-new-comedy.html. Retrieved 28 July 2011. 
  11. ^ "Harry Hill's Little Internet Show". Guardian.co.uk. 22 October 2010. http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/series/harry-hill-s-little-internet-show. Retrieved 29 December 2010. 
  12. ^ The Comedy Zone Humor Network. "Harry Hill : Comedian Profile". Comedy-zone.net. http://www.comedy-zone.net/standup/comedian/h/hill-harry.htm. Retrieved 15 June 2009. 
  13. ^ "Television - News - British Comedy Awards 2006: The Winners". Digital Spy. 13 December 2006. http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/tv/news/a40735/british-comedy-awards-2006-the-winners.html. Retrieved 24 October 2011. 

External links

Preceded by
Jonathan Wilkes
Host of You've Been Framed
Succeeded by

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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