Dave Spikey UK Tour 2023 – 2024

Life in a Northern Town

This show is all about Dave’s life in ... well ... a northern town so no surprise there. From his humble working class childhood in the small terraced houses round the mills in Bolton through passing his 11 plus and going to grammar school with an ambition to be a doctor which was thwarted just after his "O" levels. Then at 16 getting a job in the Pathology department at Bolton General Hospital and working there for 32 years ultimately as Chief Biomedical Scientist in Haematology before throwing caution to the wind and leaving to pursue a career in comedy, as you do! He will tell how he turned his microscope off for the last time on October 13th 2000 and two weeks later found himself on a car park only half a mile down the road singing "Walking on Sunshine" in the pouring rain on a makeshift stage dressed as a giant berry while a ten foot c*ck and balls slowly but surely inflated behind him. ! He wondered at that moment if he’d made the right decision. As it turns out, he had.

Thursday 2nd November 2023
The Civic
01226 327000
Wednesday 29th November 2023
Chorley Theatre
For Derian House
01257 264362
Thursday 30th November 2023
Chorley Theatre
01257 264362
Thursday 7th December 2023
The Lowther Pavilion Theatre
01253 794221
Friday 19th January 2024
Grand Theatre
01524 64695
Friday 26th January 2024
The Mart Theatre
01756 709666
Wednesday 31st January 2024
Chorley Theatre
For Endeavour Project
01257 264362
Thursday 1st February 2024
King George's Hall
01254 582579
Thursday 15th February 2024
City Varieties Music Hall
0113 243 0808


De Montfort Hall, Leicester

Spikey's gags are the stuff of stand-up dreams, his interplay and analysis the basis for clever, laugh-after-every-line comedy.

Opera House, Manchester

Comedian Dave Spikey is perhaps best known for his appearances alongside Peter Kay in Phoenix Nights but the Chorley lad is in a class of his own when it comes to stand up.

I first saw him perform last year during a charity gig with Jason Manford and was pleasantly surprised by his friendly charm and quick humour.

The writer, actor and presenter's new show Words Don't Come Easy once again presented his unique mix of nostalgia and observations on the absurdity of modern life.

As the title suggests, the new show centres around our relationship with language, from the obscure sayings of his grandparents to the ways text messaging is destroying the English language. Highlights of the show include his weird and wonderful collection of newspaper headlines.

The former-health worker also covers his love of animals including the antics of his 30 rescued chickens and one very noisy peacock.

He makes fun of some of the meaningless song lyrics in both modern and '80s pop and the taboos surrounding talking about sex that lead to playground rumours and a warped understanding of the world.

It's clear Spikey is a lover of words – after all, they're his craft – and through his exploration of different aspects of language he strikes a chord with an audience that spans three generations.

With material around his young daughter and his elderly grandmother, Spikey's humour covers life from the cradle to the grave.

Relatable, genuine and superbly funny, Spikey is a comic genius.

Bethany English - CITY LIFE

The Lowry, Salford

'I wish I hadn't worn mascara', my Lowry companion remarked as she wiped away the tears as Dave Spikey left the stage after his first half.

A hilarious 'critique' of pop songs such as James Blunt's "You're Beautiful" had prompted the tears, as the comic invited us to really think about the ridiculousness of some song lyrics we hear every day – and his own words will undoubtedly come to mind for most of the audience every time they hear them in future.

Songs were also recalled in a game played by his kids on car journeys, substituting a word for one chosen by themselves – and the resulting embarrassment as said 'fake' lyric is sung by the youngsters.

The Phoenix Nights star's words-don't-come-easy show, aimed at examining the English language, looked at the empty phrases we say, the misunderstandings that can arise (the doctor who was sending a hospitalised Spikey's gran home 'to die', but turned out to be Australian) and words of wisdom from elders.

Restaurant menu lexicon – 'Encased in a filo basket? That'll be a pie then' – and the language of newspapers were next under the microscope.

Following on from his book on the same topic, Spikey drew on his favourite headlines and evidence of careless writing that can take on a humorous meaning, such as the wife who set fire to a part of her husband's body following 'a heated argument' or the headline 'Missing Bristol man may be in Bath'.

His 'ordeal' going into a particular budget clothes shop and an examination of the clientele was one highlight, and his clever set drew to a close paging through a government handbook on safe sex for teens.

Immediately likeable and with spot-on observations, there was certainly one word that came easy for the audience – ENCORE!

Manchester Evening News

De Montfort Hall, Leicester

With a show called Words Don't Come Easy, you may think Lancastrian comedian Dave Spikey was short of things to talk about, writes Alan Thompson.

Not a bit of it – it was ludicrous words used in everyday contexts including songs, poetry and newspapers, that the Bolton-born funny man wanted to expose.

And texting: "A refuge for the illiterate – it's supposed to be quicker, but you need one of those Enigma machines to decode it."

The likeable Bolton funny man, writer and former NHS haematologist had plenty of subjects in his sights.

Pretentious-sounding menus in gastro pubs provoked his comic ire. "What's 'encased in a filo basket' mean? It's a pie then, is it?"

Wryly observed characters and situations from everyday life littered the evening, each episode lapped up by the audience.

Some of his comedy is drawn on experiences of his grandparents, with whom he spent a good deal of his childhood.

"My gran was particularly excited one day," he recalled.

"She said 'I'm having two teeth out tomorrow and a gas fire put in'"

A highly entertaining, laugh-out-loud show, and an evening of quality comedy.


Words don't come easy'; the theme of Dave Spikey's show allowed him to top and tail each half by holding up newspapers with amusing headlines or dissect the lyrics of popular songs. But the real heart of the show came from the sayings and misunderstandings of his family and friends. How his dad wooed his mum, his grandad's near final request to go lawn-bowling and the romantic advice from his ugly friend at school were all included in the anecdotes, giving the show a homely feel. But however safe and cosy it felt, we were never far from a killer punchline.

Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton

He may be best known for his role alongside Peter Kay in Phoenix Nights, but Dave Spikey showed Wolverhampton exactly why he is regarded as a top-class comedian in his own right.

Spikey brought his Words Don't Come Easy tour to the Wulfrun Hall, where he was welcomed by a packed audience.

The concept of Spikey's new show is incredibly simple – the comedian unravels the quirks of the English language through everyday words and phrases.

Spikey's sharp, punchline delivery and on-the-spot observations had the audience in stitches. But it was the comedian's analysis of "ridiculous" lyrics in songs by stars including James Blunt, Roy Orbison and Elvis following the interval that received the biggest cheers.

And judging by the applause he received at the end of the performance, it isn't difficult to see why bosses at the venue were keen to have Spikey's return following his successful 2009 appearance.

Review by Shaun Jepson


WORDS Don't Come Easy may be the title of Dave Spikey's new stand-up show but everyone who saw the comedian at his quick-fire best for two-and-a-half hours at Whitehaven Civic Hall on Friday knows this doesn't apply to him!

The show's title is a play on words, of course, and an appropriate title for a show full of news reports, turns of phrase and song lyrics where the meaning has become somewhat tongue-tied in translation. Spikey knows what he's good at – finding the absurd in the everyday – and sticks to that formula with winning results. He's well and truly mastered the art of observational comedy.

He'd done his local research too. He commiserated with us Whitehaven folk over the recent closure of Gallachers, and from his copy of The Whitehaven News shared a laugh about our story last week of the cardboard cut-out police officer bought to act as a crime deterrent being stolen.

It's refreshing to see a comedian that has a solid stand-up routine and sticks to it.

So a Top show from a Top comedian. Nothing too controversial or 'blue' – as a certain Mr Kay would say – but that's not necessarily a bad thing in a time when some comedians are pushing the envelope a little too far.

Whitley Bay

Dave Spikey delights fans at Playhouse

JOURNALISTS, poets and lyricists all get a pounding in comedian Dave Spikey's fifth UK tour that called into Whitley Bay last week.

Although probably best known as Peter Kay's sidekick, Dave Spikey is at his best when he's doing a bit of stand up, as the audience at the Playhouse Whitley bay on Saturday night found out.

Words Don't Come Easy sees the Bolton vegetarian pointing out problems with the English language through his analysis of song lyrics, newspaper headlines and entertaining anecdotes.

From duck cabaret, to his 95-year-old grandma running at B&Q's doors as fast as she can "because they still open", there wasn't a moment that went past with the theatre filling with laughter.

He walks us through a range of topics loosely connected to the interpretation of language, with amusing stories of his grandparents when he was growing up, and how something can have a range of meanings which can often lead to hilarious misunderstandings.

Words Don't Come Easy is every bit as entertaining as I had imagined it to be, but FAR, FAR funnier than I anticipated.

Jason Manford and Friends – The Lowry, Salford

Jason Manford descends on the Lowry Theatre with some pals to raise money for Joseph Jack Waldeck . The name of the game is to raise money for charity and raise awareness but some of Jason's 'friends' for the evening certainly do more than just turn up. Many are names you will recognise and some not so familiar but Justin Moorhouse was for me, on form and as loveable and as close to the bone as ever. Jimmy Cricket turned up with his tried and tested style of comedy that still raises a good few giggles throughout what can only be described as a diverse audience but there is certainly something for everyone here on this charity night.

Dave Spikey closed Act One with a side-splitting set. To some degree Spikey stole the show and his highly entertaining set reminds us what a talented comedian this guy is and how comical his material is. Something the North West is not short of is entertaining home grown comedians that for sure.

Felix Knight Limited
Telephone: 07525 204254
E-mail: kath@felixknight.com

Dave Spikey Tour Dates and Reviews