Born in Dublin in 1946, I spent my early years on a farm with my grandmother and took on responsibilities way beyond my age. These years shaped my future national identity. In 1960 I emigrated to London, just in time to join the social and cultural changes that swept away post war austerity. I had the good fortune to stay on at school and gain a place to read Physics at London University becoming the first in my immediate family to do so.
At university I participated in anti- war demonstrations, became President of the London University Debating Union and met my future Norwegian wife. After teaching in Grammar schools, I joined the comprehensive education movement and became a Head of Science and later Deputy Head at other comprehensive schools. A growing family, politics, sport and camping were now central to my life. My wife’s contacts as a language teacher coupled to my marathon running across the world served as a link to the global family.
After early retirement in 1999 I taught in some of England’s elite private schools, had a heart bypass, kept on running and did my first 100 Mile Olympic Legacy Bike Ride for Cystic Fibrosis.