Tom Shore joined the British army in 1970, a few days after his eighteenth birthday. By 1987 he had completed 17 years' service, most of it with the Airborne and Special Forces. He was now a warrant officer, and like so many of his calling, following years of physical abuse, military parachuting and trudging over mountains carrying far too much weight while wet and cold, resulting in a raft of lower limb injuries, he was headed to the British Army of the Rhine in West Germany. But in July 1989, having been called back to London to attend an early morning meeting in East London's Victoria Park everything changed.
General Sir Richard Shirreff
Born in Kenya in 1955 where he spent his early years, Richard Shirreff commissioned into the British Army as a cavalry officer after reading history at Oxford. In his 37 years of service he commanded soldiers on operations from the most junior to the most senior levels. He saw combat as a tank commander in the First Gulf War, experienced many of the complexities of Northern Ireland during his three tours there and learned first-hand the challenges of bringing peace to the Balkans in both Kosovo and Bosnia. He returned to Iraq as a multinational commander in 2006-7. When not in command he spent time either being educated in the art and science of war on a succession of different command and staff courses or in a range of posts as a formulator or executor of policy in the Ministry of Defence and Army Headquarters. His last seven years in uniform were spent in two senior NATO command posts: Commander of the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps and Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe; the Alliance's deputy strategic commander and the most senior British general in the Alliance. Since leaving the Army he has set up Strategia Worldwide, a risk management consultancy.
Former SAS corporal and the only man to escape death or capture during the Bravo Two Zero operation in the 1991 Gulf War, Chris Ryan turned to writing thrillers to tell the stories the Official Secrets Act stops him putting in his non-fiction. His novels have gone on to inspire the Sky One series Strike Back. Born near Newcastle in 1961, Chris Ryan joined the SAS in 1984. During his ten years there he was involved in overt and covert operations and was also sniper team commander of the anti-terrorist team. During the Gulf War, Chris Ryan was the only member of an eight-man unit to escape from Iraq, where three colleagues were killed and four captured. It was the longest escape and evasion in the history of the SAS. For this he was awarded the Military Medal. He wrote about his experiences in the bestseller The One That Got Away, which was adapted for screen, and since then has written three other works of non-fiction, over twenty bestselling novels and a series of childrens' books.
Andrew Rose is a barrister and historian.
Sophy Ridge is a Sky News presenter. She fronts the flagship show Sky News Tonight on Fridays and from January will present the political show Sophy Ridge on Sunday. Previously she was Senior Political Correspondent for the channel.After reading English Literature at St Edmund Hall, Oxford, Sophy became a trainee at the News of the World. She then moved to Sky News where she has covered stories from the EU referendum result to the election of Donald Trump, interviewed politicians from David Cameron to Theresa May and broadcast from countries including Afghanistan, the U.S. and Brazil. She exclusively broke the news that Jeremy Corbyn had won the Labour leadership contest in 2015 and that Ed Miliband would resign as leader of the Labour Party after the 2015 election result. Sophy has won numerous journalism awards including broadcaster of the year at the Words by Women Awards in 2016, the MHP 30 Under 30 Gold Award, and was shortlisted as Young Journalist of the Year in the Royal Television Society awards in 2013.She is a keen contributor to the Sky News website and iPad app and enjoys using social media such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to widen the news provider's audience.
Tom Quinn is the editor of the Country Landowner's Magazine. He has written several small books for small independent publishers. He has spent the last twenty years interviewing people who worked in domestic service, getting them to tell him their life stories.
At school Trevor's speciality was failing exams. Then he became entranced by a TV series in which Hans Hass went Diving to Adventure with his beautiful wife Lotte. From that moment he knew he had to become a marine biologist. To everyone's surprise he began to pass exams.Later on Trevor held a Personal Chair at Glasgow University and was then appointed Professor of Marine Biology at Liverpool University and director of its Marine Laboratory. He has been the president of two Learned Societies and served on the expert assessors' panel and the policy panel of the European Commission for funding major international research projects. Also a member of the annual review committee of the British Antarctic Survey, and chairman of the Aquatic Science Committee of the Natural Environment Research Council, and a Fulbright-Hayes Fellow in the United States. In addition to180 scientific articles he has also penned 30 magazine articles. Following retirement Trevor became Emeritus Professor at Liverpool University and an Honorary Senior Fellow affiliated to the Centre for Manx Studies. His efforts at literary non- fiction have been critically acclaimed on both sides of the Atlantic, and his writing has been compared to that of Bill Bryson, Gerald Durrell and Rachel Carson.He has published widely on ecological topics. His much acclaimed books include Stars Beneath the Sea, Reflections on a Summer Sea and Under Water to Get out of the Rain.Trevor lives on the Isle of Man with his wife.
Frank McDonough is Professor of International History at Liverpool John Moores University. He was born in Liverpool. He studied history at Balliol College, Oxford and gained a PhD from Lancaster University. He has written many books on the Third Reich, including: Hitler and the Rise of the Nazi Party (2012), Sophie Scholl: The Woman Who Defied Hitler (2009), The Holocaust (2008), Opposition and Resistance in Nazi Germany (2001), Hitler, Chamberlain and Appeasement (2002), and Hitler and Nazi Germany (1999). He has also published many other books, most notably, The Origins of the Second World War: An International Perspective (2011), The Conservative Party and Anglo-German Relations (2007), Chamberlain, Appeasement and the British Road to War (1998) and The Origins of the First and Second World Wars (1997). Frank has appeared on TV and radio numerous times discussing the Third Reich. He featured in a six part series 'Nazi Secrets' for National Geographic in 2012 and a 10 part series 'The Rise of the Nazis' for the Discovery Channel. He has appeared in Third Reich documentaries for BBC 1, Channel 5, and Russia Today. He acted as 'Historical Consultant' for the BBC 'History of the World Project' and the 'BBC World War One at Home' series of programmes. The US History Network placed Frank's popular Twitter account: @FXMC1957 in the Top 30 most popular historical Twitter accounts in the World.
John Matthews has written widely on Arthurian, Celtic and Mythic London respectively. He is best known as an authority on the history and myths of King Arthur, as well as Druidry, Faery Lore and Celtic Shamanism. He is the author of 90 books including the New York Times bestseller Pirates. He has worked as an historical advisor on films such as King Arthur (2004) and is currently developing a number of feature length scripts and documentaries.
Caitlín and John Matthews are the co-authors of the Encyclopedia of Celtic Wisdom and Encyclopedia of Celtic Myth and Legend. Caitlín is acknowledged as a world authority on Celtic wisdom and the ancestral traditions of Britain, while John has produced nearly 100 books on Arthurian legend. They live in Oxford.
Like many boys who don't want to be train drivers or astronauts, Mark grew up wanting to be an Army Officer. After a standard schooling involving rugby, football, girls and all manner of detentions he left Oxfordshire for University College London to study Archaeology. Discovering a lack of real life India Jones moments Mark eventually fulfilled his boyhood ambition and commissioned into the Coldstream Guards in 2004. From Nigeria to Canada, Belize to Buckingham Palace, Mark had a diverse and fulfilling career, seeing active service in both Iraq and Afghanistan.On his return from Afghanistan Mark was diagnosed with PTSD and subsequently left the army in 2010. After a turbulent couple of years dealing with the aftermath of war Mark is now happily settled in South West London with his girlfriend. He runs a yoga business, pursues his passion for Archaeology and goes to therapy.
As East Africa correspondent of The Economist in the early eighties Graham Hancock began to write a series of highly acclaimed books on economics, politics and foreign aid. His life took a whole new turn when he became fascinated by rumours that the Ark of the Covenant is real artefact, hidden somewhere in northern Africa. The story of his detective work, tracking it down to its supposed final resting place became the international bestseller The Sign and the Seal (now in production as a feature film.) More bestsellers in the field of 'alternative history' followed, including Fingerprints of the Gods, Keeper of Genesis (the latter co-authored with Robert Bauval) and Heaven's Mirror. In Supernatural he described his experiences journeying to experiment with hallucinogenic drugs amongst tribes people for whom they represent a gateway into supernatural realms. His ideas on exploring new dimensions in consciousness became the subject of his controversial TED talks.Graham Hancock's books have been translated into twenty-seven languages and have sold over nine million copies worldwide. His public lectures and broadcasts, including two major TV series for Channel 4, Quest for the Lost Civilisation, and Flooded Kingdoms of the Ice Age, have further established his reputation as an unconventional thinker who raises controversial questions about humanity`s past.
Roger Field And Geoffrey Gordo
Geoffrey Gordon-Creed DSO, MC was born in 1920 and served right through the Second World War, finally retiring as a lieutenant-colonel, aged 28. He was awarded the Military Cross on his first day in action in 1941 on day one of an eleven day battle that saw his regiment almost destroyed. He joined the SAS before being recruited by the Special Operations Executive. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for successfully leading a supposedly 'impossible' operation: the first of many. He died in 2002. Roger Field served in the British army for 10 years and saw action with The Blues and Royals in the Falklands. He qualified as a lawyer, subsequently working in the newspaper, TV, magazine and book publishing industries. He is a freelance writer and runs his own literary agency.
Like many boys who don't want to be train drivers or astronauts, Mark grew up wanting to be a soldier. After a standard schooling involving rugby, football, girls and all manner of detentions he left Oxfordshire for University College London to study archaeology. Discovering a lack of real-life Indiana Jones moments, Mark eventually fulfilled his boyhood ambition and was commissioned into the Coldstream Guards in 2004.From Nigeria to Canada, Belize to Buckingham Palace, Mark had a diverse and fulfilling career, seeing active service in both Iraq and Afghanistan.On his return from Afghanistan Mark was diagnosed with PTSD and subsequently left the army in 2010 after reaching the rank of Captain. His experiences have led him to work with Help for Heroes and Combat Stress to raise awareness for those affected by recent conflicts. After a turbulent couple of years dealing with the aftermath of war Mark is now happily settled in South West London with his girlfriend.
Chyna was born in South London in 1989. After years spent moving between deprived homes and safehouses, her family settled in an estate in the middle of gangland. She was enrolled at the local secondary school, where she immediately made a close-knit group of friends. After an attack left one of the girls badly beaten, they resolved to form the Nothing 2 Lose gang. Several years of brutal gang warfare followed. At the age of 16, Chyna fell into a life of drugs and crime, operating on the city streets and out of crackhouses across the country. Affiliated with boys from several notorious South London gangs, Chyna finally managed to escape the gang lifestyle after a tragic incident involving a friend served as a wake-up call. Find out more information on Facebook and Twitter https://www.facebook.com/bookfam and @FAMChyna.