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About devondiver

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About devondiver
"The cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea". ~ Isak DinesenAfter I left Chellaston School in '89, I went to study A-Levels at John Port Sixth Form College. After 2 great years there I went to Wolverampton University to study Politics. After graduating with my degree I worked for a couple of years in the West Midlands before joining the RAF as an officer. During my 8 years of military service, I served at RAF Buchan, RAF Wittering, RAF Cranwell, RAF Marham and Gibraltar Barracks, Camberley. The highlights of my military career include; running military police, security and counter-intelligece for an underground nuclear bunker in Scotland, living in a tent deep in the Oman desert for 4 months, hurricane disaster planning with the Belize government, helping train the Parachute Regiment for the first British deployment to southern Afghanistan, recruiting a new generation of officers and airmen in the RAF as a recruiting manager, undergoing the intense officer training course at RAF Cranwell and subsquent staff officer training at Shrivenham Defence College, helping to plan the invasion of Iraq and . I was decorated for service in the Afghanistan ('01) and Iraq ('03) operations. I have enjoyed studying martial arts since I was very young. I recieved my first black belt in ju-jitsu when was 20, whilst at University. Whilst studying, I was involved with the creation of a multi-style martial arts club, where members could share and test techniques from many different styles. I was fortunate to learn Sombo (Russian wrestling) and Judo at that time. In 1995, I was a cornerman for Rob Harris, fighting in the first ever 'MMA' bout in the UK. I met Lee Hasdell at this event (he was the organiser) and continued to attend and assist at his events, which were the fore-runners of MMA in the UK. I arranged the first amateur MMA events (National Amateur Vale Tudo) in the UK, during 1996-98 at Wolverhampton. Lee Hasdell (via AMA) awarded me my second degree black belt in Vale Tudo Jiu-Jitsu in 1998. One of my training partners at University was Dale Adams, who subsequently founded MMA Universe, B.A.M.M.A. (British Association of Mixed Martial Arts) and also Ultimate Combat (one of the UKs first professional cage MMA events). I assisted with these as an official, referee and commentary interviewer (for DVD releases) until 2006. Through my connection with B.A.M.M.A, I was chosen to assist the UFC, in their first event in the UK. In 2002, I was the Head Adjudicator at UFC 30 (Brawl at the Albert Hall). In 2003, I was awarded my 3rd Dan Black Belt in Jiu-Jitsu. Over the last 25 years of martial arts study, I have been fortunate to train with practitioners like Nogueira, Wanderlei Silva , Dan Severn, Udo Qualmalz, Neil Adams, Nathan Leverton and several of members of the Gracie family.My other major hobby is scuba diving. I learnt to scuba dive in the UK, during 1997 - getting my first experience in an ice cold flooded quarry in Leicester. Since then I have travelled and dived across the globe, including the Maldives, Caribbean, Red Sea, Ascension Island and all across SE Asia. I qualified as a BSAC Scuba Instructor in 2005, followed by PADI Instructor in 2006 and SSI Instructor in 2007. My primary interest as been underwater photography (see my galleries) and deep diving on shipwrecks. In order to develop my diving I qualified as a technical (decompression) diving instructor with DSAT in 2007. Once I left the RAF in 2007, I decided to take a sabbatical and work in Asia using my diving qualifications. I spent several years working on Koh Tao, in Thailand, as an instructor/manager, before spending a season in Borneo (Sipidan/Mabul) and then running a dive center in the Philippines. During these years, I took advantage of my location and travelled extensively around Asia.At the end of 2009, I returned to a 'proper career' and accepted a contract to work as HR Operations Manager for a blue chip fuel company operating in Afghanistan. I enjoyed several months living and working in Kabul, especially being able to inter-act and learn with the local culture.Currently, I am relaxing in the Philippines :-D
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Underwater photography, Decompression Theory, Military history, Diving Sidemount, Devon, Wreck divin
Consultant Technical Diving Instructor, Freelance sidemount, technical and advanced wreck diving tui



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