The Milk Tray Man - dropping in every night for four decades


The Milk Tray Man - dropping in every night for four decades

It was one of the most iconic British TV ads ever, and spanned four decades. A mysterious James Bond-style man dressed in all black facing danger at every turn to deliver something of vital importance to a romantically anticipatory woman – a box of Cadbury's Milk Tray chocolates.

The advert with the famous message 'All because the lady loves... Milk Tray', was clearly inspired by the James Bond films. It was first seen on British TV screens in 1968.

Remarkably, rather like the Bond casting sequence, only four men performed as the mysterious delivery man over the 40-year life of the advert.

The first Milk Tray man was actor Gary Myers who performed the role between 1968 and 1984. He was followed by James Coombes in 1987 and Alan Riley in 2003.

The last man to don the black jumper was firefighter Patrick McBride who won the comeback role in 2016 ahead of 20,000 other hopefuls. His mission to deliver the lady her box of Milk Tray was set in the Altai Mountains over the Mongolian steppe. The death-defying stunts involved flying sequences and a stampeding yak.

Many of the stunts over the years were carried out by stuntmen who appeared in Bond movies. The iconic music that accompanied the advert is called “Night Rider” and was composed by Cliff Adams who also wrote the music for the Fry’s Turkish Delight commercials.

The Milk Tray Man has now disappeared, and there is no indication if he will ever return.

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