I was born in London in 1953, grew up there and moved to the English south coast when I was nineteen. I worked in manufacturing and construction – at the sharp end – not in the office, and was moderately successful. I had always been fascinated by travel, the natural world and by adventure sports. I worked in two European countries, Canada, and Australia and visited many more.
I tried parachuting, abseiling and bungee jumping. I got heavily into Karate, skiing and long distance cycle touring, which resulted in the best trip of my life – cycling from Vancouver in British Columbia down to San Francisco, California taking the coastal Route 101 all the way.
Since watching the adventures of the ‘Calypso’ and her crew as a child I had wanted to scuba. I knew several commercial divers in my twenties but their life style didn’t really appeal to me. A friend of mine took up recreational diving in the English Channel, and his stories held no appeal for me at all! So in my late thirties I bit the bullet and did my PADI Open Water course in Egypt. It was an experience that changed my life.
I fell totally in love with it. I didn’t dive much since I had to travel such a long way to find warm clear water, but it affected me to my core. My safety stop on my last dive of a trip abroad was an agony. I had to do more.
So in my late forties, by now married to a Malaysian girl, I decided to follow my passion, become a diving instructor and radically alter my life.
We moved to Malaysia and I completed my training. By a chance meeting in a bar in Phuket I got a job instructing in Salang on Tioman Island and I am now into my sixteenth season here. As a teenager I got into photography as a hobby, and while I lack the inspirational gift of ‘seeing’ and capturing a three dimensional vision into a two dimensional image, I have been bringing cameras underwater to try to capture and share the magic that inspires me.
After ten years of working in two dive shops, plus several years back in construction in Malaysia, England, Kuwait and New Zeeland, I set up my Scuba Guru web site and started business as an independent instructor.
I bring a commitment to diver training and an understanding of what people do, and how they find their adventure that is unusual in this industry, and I use a business model that is unique on Tioman Island and rare worldwide.