radio 4 charles campion tom pemberton lge - About Hairy Bar Snacks

Hairy Bar Snacks is a website about all things Pork Scratchings.

So you are wondering about where this Hairy Bar Snacks thing came from? Well, a long time ago in a galaxy quite near, a drunken man bought a bag of Shakey’s pork scratchings from a pub in Perranporth, Cornwall, England. I was with friends.

It was August 1998, The Manic Street Preachers were on the radio and the sun was shining brightly.

We’d bought scratchings before, but these pork scratchings were a bit different. They weren’t in a tiny foil bag, but in a larger clear plastic bag with a tape seal like you still get on a loaf of bread. I asked myself, ‘Is this how scratchings used to be?’.

An Epiphany

At that moment, I realised there was more to scratchings than I had first thought. There may be a rabbit hole I could descend.

I decided to start collecting pork scratching bags. The bag was funny, odd, interesting, ridiculous, different and I could see that there was scope for a few more bags to be found on the way. The little pigman butcher characters, what are they all about? I thought to myself, I could frame these bags and put them all over my room. Why not? I have had many more stupid ideas!

Over time, the bags accumulated, but sadly, none ever reached the spotlight and glamour of display on my wall, or any other wall for that matter. Procrastination is the thief of time.

The Website

Fast forward to 2005, and another drunken night in the pub was upon us. Towards the end of the night, if we were going to the bar to buy some scratchings, we wouldn’t use the real name for them. We would use the code, “Hairy Bar Snacks anyone?”.

This night, a perfect storm was upon us, beer, snacks, energy, inspiration. “I know, let’s buy a domain name & build a website.” I could scan the bags, make a gallery, show the world the crazy niche that I like. I could, at long last, put these hidden gems up on the wall. hairybarsnacks.com will do. And it was done.

I’d been designing websites for nearly 10 years and had just bought some server space to host websites I’d built for my clients. I could see that the internet was a hotbed of niche activity. So buying the domain name and building a website seemed like a logical progression. Let’s see what happens I thought to myself.

It’s getting out of hand now

Like all things, one thing leads to another. Rarely do we step through one door, only to fins one more door, there are usually many. The original idea was to start with a few bag pictures on the web, well, why don’t we write some pork scratching reviews when we see/eat them in the pub, OK then, why not review the pub while we’re at it, come on, let’s go on a pork scratchings pub crawl looking for as many as we can find, let’s start a newsletter, I’m going to write a blog, make some in the oven at home, design some tee shirts, dip my toe into social media, etc.

And now you are here. Welcome, Hello. Have a look around.

pork scratching shakeys 01 - About Hairy Bar Snacks

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