Simon Harris - Man Behaving Dadly Wiki

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  • Simon Harris AKA Man Behaving Dadly is 40 years of age and is ostensibly a blogger, internet personality, and freelance social media manager. In reality, he's a performing clown desperate for attention and social media engagement.

    He became known in January 2024, when it was widely reported that he had received large sums of money from Essex County Council for social media work. There were serious concerns over the value for money he provided and how he got the contract. See below for more.

    Simon is known for creating dozens of online fundraisers, most notably one for the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institute) for whom he secured almost £250,000 in donations to buy them a new hovercraft he calls The Flying Farage - to spite Nigel Farage who has blamed the RNLI for helping migrants cross. Although this appeal is legitimate and the RNLI have confirmed they receive the money, questions have been raised over other fundraising efforts of Simon's including one for victims of the Horizon Scandal.

    He has been described in the media as a "comedian", "satirist", "prankster", and "funnyman." He is none of these things, unless you think playing unfunny practical jokes and farting out tired old quips onto the internet is somehow a career.

    About Simon

    Simon lives near Southend, Essex, UK. He was married to Rachael and they have four children: sons T. (aged 3), J. (aged 6), L. (aged 10), and daughter E. (aged 7.) L. has autism, which Simon has written about at length. Rachael used to be part of Simon's "brand" with her Facebook page Mum Behaving Madly; but she quickly gave it up. After some speculation as to whether Simon and Rachael were still together, it became apparent that they had separated and she has a new partner.

    Simon is constantly begging for attention. Until January 2024 he had a heavy Twitter presence, often tweeting relentlessly at public figures or bragging about the number of likes/retweets he got. He had around 110,000 followers on Twitter and 200,000 on his Facebook until he deleted his social media in January 2024; he has since returned to Facebook where he runs both a personal account and a Man Behaving Dadly account. He also regularly features in the local newspaper, desperately trying to get noticed for anything at all.

    Simon does various freelance marketing work, mainly for Essex County Council. As well as his social media, he previously had a Man Behaving Dadly blog, and a spoof news site called Southend News Network (which is just another outlet for his endlessly recycled jokes.) He fundraises online for various causes, notably the RNLI, and often brags about how much he raised even though all he did was direct donations to a GoFundMe. His suspicious attempt to raise money for those affected by the Horizon Scandal (through a private GoFundMe rather than the official fund) led to closer scrutiny of his finances, and he vanished from the internet rather than answer those questions.

    Simon's Fixations

    Things/people he likes

    • Harry and Meghan
    • King Charles III - despite Simon's professed disdain for the Royal Family, he wouldn't shut up about it when he met then-Prince Charles.
    • Breastfeeding
    • Toilet humour
    • Endlessly recycling the same "jokes" and tweets
    • Accusing others of "ragewanking"
    • The RNLI
    • Supertanskii - he likes to imitate her habit of calling others "cockwombles" and "wankspanglers."
    • Gary Lineker
    • Phillip Schofield - Simon defended him just because Schofield was being discussed on GB News.
    • Mae Muller - 2023 UK contestant in the Eurovision Contest, who is critical of Brexit. In a stunning display of logic, Simon encouraged pro-EU Europeans to vote for Muller ... which would cause the UK to win.
    • Social media validation
    • GoFundMe - Simon professes to be an heroic fundraiser and brags about how much money he’s raised for charity in his Twitter bio. In reality, Simon’s benevolence is simply a cover for his own self obsession and his fundraising activities involve nothing more than sitting in his underwear at home, eating Pringles and retweeting links to GoFundMe pages. No marathons, sponsored sky dives or anything which requires the slightest bit of effort on his part.
    • Mouldy bananas – Every time schools are due to return from a holiday period, Simon rolls out the same gag about parents discovering a mouldy banana in their children’s lunchbox from the previous term. Oftentimes, the joke is embellished with tales of the banana evolving into a sentient mutant. The appearance of the gag has become so reliable that in August 2023, a book was opened allowing Tattle members to bet when it would make its customary appearance. The forum was buzzing with anticipation on Sunday 3rd September as the community sensed that it was near, and Simon didn't disappoint. The last day of any school holiday is now known as Banana Tweet Day in honour of Simon's favourite joke.

    Things/people he doesn't like

    • Tattle
    • Anyone politically right of Jeremy Corbyn
    • The Tories
    • "Barry", "Clive", "Keith", and "Brian" - imaginary characters Simon made up for the purpose of strawman arguments.
    • GB News
    • Brexit - Simon voted leave in 2016 (as a "protest vote" he says) but now constantly complains about Brexit and insults other leave voters. We suspect he doesn't regret his vote at all and is just playing to his audience. If he'd attracted a Tory crowd at the start, he would be praising Brexit intead.
    • The Daily Mail
    • "The S*n"
    • Nigel Farage - Simon's RNLI fundraising campaign is intended to buy a hovercraft called "The Flying Farage" just to spite him.
    • Smiling - as a bitter, left-wing extremist, smiling does not come naturally to Simon. On occasions where he is required to pose for photographs, his forced attempts at appearing happy often leave him looking like he’s just had a lobotomy. Some have theorised that he was taught to smile by a blind person describing it to him or that his expression was actually the result of an unfortunately placed cattle prod.

    Things/people he's not sure about

    • Jack Monroe - fellow Southend-based grifter. He used to be a big fan of hers but has somewhat changed his tune ever since public opinion turned against her
    • Gender issues - Simon doesn't discuss these because he can't predict how his followers would respond.

    The Horizon Scandal Fund Fundraising Scandal

    On 3rd January 2024, ITV aired Mr Bates vs the Post Office - a drama series about the Horizon Scandal (in which hundreds of Post Office employees were wrongly prosecuted on theft and fraud charges.) This was followed by a documentary about the real case. Subsequently, Simon set up a GoFundMe for the Horizon Scandal Fund, which supports those affected by the Horizon Scandal.

    Because the Horizon Scandal Fund was a relatively new charity, they were not listed as such on the GoFundMe platform. Therefore, the money would go to GoFundMe UK's charity arm, who would then give the money to the fund as a grant. The Horizon Scandal Fund, however, has a fully functioning online donation form set up with Gift Aid attached.

    On 4th January, an investigative journalist (also a trustee of the Horizon Scandal Fund) commented on Simon's Facebook post that "the only way to guarantee your donation will reach the Horizon Scandal Fund is by donating directly to the Horizon Scandal Fund. Simon has never contacted us. We have no way of knowing if he is acting in good faith. And therefore we have no idea what will happen to your money if you give it to Simon."

    Shortly after this broke on Tattle, it made its way to Twitter. Shortly after it made its way to Twitter, Simon closed the GoFundMe as "it had reached £1000", and shared the link to the Horizon Scandal Fund donation page. This is in spite of the fact that he had initially set the fundraiser up with a target for £10,000. (Archived capture of GoFundMe page). After receiving many messages and comments, and news of his grift spreading, he closed down his Facebook, Twitter, blog, and SNN page. He's since claimed (see below) that this was solely related to an ongoing police investigation over threats against him.

    Dodgy finances

    Ranting on the internet doesn't pay the bills - so Simon does freelance content creation/social media management work, mostly for local authorities in/around Essex. He also co-owned a company called D Media and made money from ads on at least two websites: Southend News Network, and Dodgy Drivers.

    Local authorities contracts

    Simon has often worked with Essex County Council, his local council. Spending documents available on ECC's website show that in the space of five financial years (up to 2023-24), payments of almost £500,000 were made to Simon Harris for professional services. ECC and Simon have since confirmed that all these payments were made to him. He has multiple CCJs on public record, which is concerning - when local authorities choose suppliers they will normally check to see that the provider is solvent.

    What's questionable is Simon's business relationship with someone (K.) who has held various senior roles in Essex local authorities. K. ran a company called Socialkind, which offered comms/marketing services. Simon was named as a director on the website but not listed as one on Companies House - thus, he was a shadow director. He was in charge of Essex County Council's COVID comms, and Socialkind did the same type of work for Suffolk local authorities. He evidently worked on both; the content and "house style" is identical. But while Suffolk made payments to Socialkind, ECC paid Simon directly (which they have since confirmed.) We question if he was the only beneficiary, and if this was a way of getting around conflict of interest restrictions?

    At the time, K. was in a senior management position at the department of ECC that was paying Simon. Socialkind was dissolved before accounts were due; only for K. to set up a new company with more or less the same name (Social Kindness) shortly after. Subsequently, Suffolk Council made their agreement for services with Socialkind, an entity that legally no longer existed - therefore the agreement couldn't be enforced.

    K. now works for the local NHS in the Mid and South Essex Integrated Care Partnership, and Simon freelances for them too. He sits in committee meetings and is an admin of their official Facebook group; K. is also on the committee. For this, Simon identifies as Blaireau - a business he previously ran for tutoring/IT support work (which he seemingly hasn't done in years.) It is not a registered company but he can do this kind of work as a sole trader. What was the tender process he went through to get his contract with them, and is he involved with Social Kindness, which is still trading?

    Simon earned between £65,000 (in 2023-24) and £192,700 (in 2021-22) from Essex County Council each year. That's a huge sum for one person. By comparison, in the private sector, £500,000 would pay for a team of professional agency staff for a year or more. He earned as much per year on average as an experienced director of a PR/advertising/comms agency; and continued to be highly paid by ECC after COVID restrictions ended. Regardless of the amount of money, the main issue here is the lack of transparency and his business relationship with K. Simon wasn't the only person that ECC hired for comms/social media work, so their overall spend in this area was much higher. Some of their other contractors also appear to work with K. often.

    ECC has publicly stated:
    • They had an established business relationship with Simon before the pandemic, and resumed working with him for COVID comms
    • They followed procedures for appropriate use of taxpayers' money and preventing conflicts of interest
    • His fee included not just social media content, but other services such as support for others doing COVID outreach work across the UK. It also took into account the fact that he produced record levels of engagement for ECC. (That wasn't difficult during "lockdowns" when people were stuck at home with nothing to do!)
    • Simon was paid directly "for expediency" and they did not make any payments to Socialkind/Social Kindness.
    This is rather vague and still leaves a lot of unanswered questions e.g. what work was Simon doing to support others? (It's an old trick for contractors to charge extra for services such as "liaising with suppliers" for instance.)

    On 11th January 2024, Simon released a statement through EssexLive. He said he had removed his social media temporarily because of harassment/threats that were being investigated by police. Stating that during the COVID pandemic he worked for ECC 7 days a week, and the payments to him covered his services in other areas (such as climate change) along with work from other content creators and staff. It is not clear whether he is saying that the money went to him and he paid others from that (i.e. subcontractors), or whether - as ECC suggested - his fee included his support of other staff. If the former, why didn't he just say so, and why have none of the people involved spoken up to confirm this? What about the other contractors ECC hired for pandemic-related comms?

    The local and national press reported on this, and opposition Lib Dem Councillor Mike Mackrory promised to investigate who authorised the payments and how much. On 25th January 2024, the Liberal Democrat Group at Essex County Council requested an Extraordinary Meeting of the council and an urgent investigation into ECC's contract with Simon. ECC also published this regarding Simon giving their explanation as to what was paid and why, and information about who signed off the spending (much of it by - surprise! - K.)

    The leader of ECC has since admitted a number of "regrettable" mistakes over the contracts with Simon, and as of March 2024, an investigation into the funding is ongoing.

    D Media/Dodgy Drivers

    D Media is a company of which Simon and another person (I.) were co-directors. It was not connected to K. or Socialkind/Social Kindness. The company was liquidated with around £74,500 of debt including a £21,000 COVID "bounce back" loan. While these loans were handed out quite freely during the pandemic, it's questionable how D Media got such a large sum. Its main business activities appear to have been two websites (Dodgy Drivers and Southend News Network - see below) and associated social media, all of which had low engagement and were rarely updated during the time the company was operating. It's therefore hard to see how they would reach an annual turnover in the region of £84,000, which is what would have been required for a £21,000 bounce back loan.

    The company also owed over £15k in unpaid taxes to HMRC. For all Simon's complaints about Tory tax-dodging, he seems happy not to pay tax that's funding public services. Given the amount of money he earned from Essex County Council alone, why couldn't he have begun to pay back his company's tax or loan?

    Simon's business partner I. registered a company called Dodgy Drivers, which ran the website Simon wrote for the website until 2020. As you can see from the bottom of the archived page, at that time the website credited D Media, although it no longer does. D Media and Dodgy Drivers both finalised their dissolution in 2023; but as of January 2024, the website is still up and contains affiliate links. It also has a currently active Youtube channel where videos average around 25,000 views, so is making money from ads/clicks; and a Patreon that shares regular videos for subscribers. Both have become much more active since Dodgy Drivers and D Media were dissolved as companies. Has control of the Dodgy Drivers website and social media passed to someone else, or is Simon still involved and still making money from this?

    Southend News Network

    Southend News Network is Simon's spoof "news" website. He registered it as a company in 2016 and it was dissolved in January 2018 by mandatory strike-off - meaning it either was no longer trading or had failed to meet regulations. Despite this, Southend News Network still had an active website with ads until closed by Simon in January 2024 after the Horizon fundraising scandal (see above.) Perhaps he was also running this as a sole trader, but in light of everything else, it raises questions. Simon hasn't reinstated the website, but its Facebook page is now active again.

    Amusingly, various far-right figures including the English Defence League and Milo Yiannopoulos cited Southend News Network as a legitimate source (on multiple, separate occasions), failing to realise that it was a parody.

    Nasty little man

    Despite Simon frequently professing to fight against injustice and prejudice in all their forms, he's (surprise!) not the nicest person.

    Simon seems to think it is okay to pick on people as long as they're the ones he has decided are the bad guys. In July 2023 he defended Huw Edwards over allegations of paying a teenager for explicit photos; Simon said it was cruel to discuss this because of Edwards' mental health. But subsequently, Dan Wootton (whom Simon had recently criticised for his comments on Edwards) was also accused of paying men for nudes. Simon happily tore into him, apparently Wootton's mental health isn't important.

    He talks a lot about misogyny and women being bullied online, yet abuses Tory women like Nadine Dorries and Sophie Corcoran on Twitter. He tweeted at Gillian Keegan (then Secretary of State for Education, who was under fire over school closures) with what came across as a threat of violence.

    On multiple occasions he has tried to shut down online discussion about alleged sex offences by public figures; telling people they will be sued and should stop talking about it. While it's important not to outright say anything libellous on social media, he comes across as aggressive and dismissive of victims or people who may genuinely know a victim.

    He is happy to make racist jokes for engagement when it suits him (this one referencing the Only Fools and Horses episode "The Longest Night." He deleted the tweet when others pointed out that it was racist.) Despite frequently accusing others of racism, and suggesting that any criticism of a person of colour in the public eye is because of their race.

    He was once commissioned to help local NHS authorities design a campaign promoting cervical screening; and came up with the slogan "Use Your Head, and Spread." Why they thought it appropriate to commission him for a campaign about women's health, telling women in crude and overly-sexual terms to "spread (their legs)", is anyone's guess.

    He is in multiple Facebook groups devoted to "hun" memes, where he leaves very vicious comments that make it clear he enjoys making fun of working-class women.

    He often defends shoplifting (especially of baby milk) and tells his followers not to report others for stealing baby milk. It is irresponsible to post things like this because it can encourage someone to risk shoplifting and potential arrest. Criminals like to steal formula milk to resell and/or mix with drugs - if you see someone pinching it, they may very well not be a struggling person trying to feed their baby.

    Simon is Jewish but is a fan of Supertanskii (who made antisemitic "jokes" on her blog) and several Labour politicians accused of antisemitism. He justifies this by saying one can be both Jewish and antisemitic. That's true, but do you really want to advertise it?

    In response to a Facebook post by an autistic man who had called police over a dispute in Costa Coffee, Simon left a rather nasty comment insulting/making fun of him. How would Simon feel if someone treated his own autistic son that way?

    Simon spoke about government plans to reduce the cost of HS2 (a project to connect England by high-speed rail) by cancelling the line to Manchester. When someone pointed out that Simon has never lived in the north of England and doesn't understand how this affects others, he replied, "Don’t worry. I developed an ability to empathise with others a while ago. For example, I criticised Putin even though I don't have an apartment in Lviv."

    A poster on Twitter alleges that after they complained about being overcharged by a local garage, the owner had Simon (who does promotional work for the garage) threaten the poster's wife into taking down a negative review, or else he would use social media to ruin her business. We of course can't verify this.

    Simon has made very inappropriate, borderline paedophilic "jokes" on Southend News Network about young children having crushes on teachers or watching porn.

    Behaving dadly, badly

    Given the inordinate amount of time Simon spends on social media, it's questionable how much childcare he actually does. He once defended this by saying he gets a lot done in a day, including driving the kids around and "answering questions about Peppa Pig." Take a look at his list and decide for yourself.

    His social media indicates that his children spend a lot of time using screens. He also shares photos where they look visibly dirty and/or have unwashed hair.

    Simon has shared a lot of personal information about his children online and in published press articles. This includes their names, birthdays, photos, what school they attend, and details about L.'s autism. All the children are far too young to understand the implications for their privacy. When Simon was first on social media he took more care to hide their identities e.g. by blurring out the logo on their school uniform, but no longer bothers.

    On one memorable occasion he made dozens of tweets complaining about then one-year-old T. throwing a tantrum in the supermarket. Simon then got into an argument with someone who criticised him for giving T. crisps that hadn't been paid for. Maybe T. would have been in a better mood if his dad paid attention to him and got on with the shopping rather than ranting on Twitter?

    Simon had L. pose for a staged photo looking at the Daily Mail website and then said he'd rather L. were watching porn. Because that's a totally normal thing to say about your 8-year-old.

    Simon often appears in local press because he'll sell any non-story for attention. One of these was when L. wanted to go to a chip shop that was famous on TikTok. Simon drove his children there on a Sunday when the shop was shut, just so he could take photos outside. It was a five-hour round trip and T., who was still a baby, went with them. Why would you put your children through this just for content?

    He once "joked" in his Twitter bio that he "will use own kids for freebies" when this is exactly what he does.

    On 7 September 2023, Simon gave an interview on a US public radio show about the UK schools concrete crisis. Two-year-old T. "accidentally" interrupted the broadcast and thought the host was "Mummy." Did Simon stage this or do the kids really see so little of their mother that T. thought a complete stranger was her? This added to the speculation that Simon and Rachael have separated.

    He appears to have used his children in undeclared ads, including his daughter in a promotion for a banking service for under-18s.

    Greatest hits from his blog

    Desperately seeking attention

    Simon frequently tweets at Martin Lewis (journalist/TV presenter with a focus on personal finance) and Carol Vorderman, trying to get their attention. He will often do this several times a day, see here for examples of some of his tweets to Martin Lewis. Lewis appears to have blocked him for this reason.

    When Simon ranted about how life was supposedly better for everyone in Britain during the 2012 Olympics, the actor Sean Biggerstaff responded and called him "an ignorant, complacent arsehole." Simon retweeted this without comment because he couldn't resist the urge to show off that someone in the public eye had noticed him!

    Simon regularly appears in his local newspaper with ridiculous non-stories such as:

    Most of these involve fundraising/tin-rattling. Note the comments sections, which are not particularly kind to Simon.

    My fellow Southenders and I have had to put up with this moron forcing his gurning meathead in front of the lenses of our local news reporters for years. So for his final hurrah to be an article all about his sentencing would just be glorious.

    I’ve mentioned this before but I know we have a few new faces so it’s worth telling it again. We nicknamed him the village idiot in the comments section of Echo News.
    In 2023, the UK faced a crisis over schools being closed out of concern the buildings could collapse (as they were built with cheap concrete that isn't designed to last.) Simon rushed to cash in on this and whored himself out to any media outlet that would have him. He managed to get a radio interview in the USA, and a brief quote on BBC News. He then posted a number of self-righteous tweets making it sound like the press were beating a path to his door. Simon's only "qualification" to talk about this is that (like thousands if not millions of other parents in Britain) his children go to an affected school. He knows nothing about building materials, education, or anything else relevant to the topic.

    Simon thinks he's the next Jeremy Beadle and likes to play stupid "pranks", such as sending wine and Dairylea to 10 Downing Street or making a parking space look like it said BLACKS. Then he goes running to the local papers in glee again, as if it's somehow a hot news story.

    Book of (literal) crap

    Simon is the author of a children's book called Little Budgie's Done a Fudgie about a baby bird learning to use the potty. (We will not link it here but it can be found for sale online.) It is self-published because several publishers rejected it, he spoke about this on his Facebook at the time. The book contains faeces and toilet humour in abundance, and is generally of the quality you would expect someone like Simon to turn out.

    Simon has not responded well to criticism of the book. At one point he shared a letter he had received from the manager of a nursery, who had turned down a donated copy of the book as she was concerned it might encourage children to try to eat their own faeces (since "fudge" is a word they will associate with food.) Simon called her snooty and condescending, and encouraged his followers to make fun of her - even though she had a perfectly valid point. On another occasion he received a complaint from a fundamentalist Christian who was angry because she mistakenly thought the title referred to a sex act. As usual, Simon's response was to run to the press as if this were anything resembling news.