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About Me

I was born in Chester in September 1975 and raised in a town called Runcorn, Cheshire, in the North of England. During my time at secondary school, I developed a passion for physical fitness training, particularly long distance running. I also took up Boxing and Karate; in the latter I went on to win the Shukokai Cheshire Karate Championships. Today, I still maintain a keen interest in the theory and practice of self-defence, particularly ‘Street’ self-defence.

andy picAfter leaving secondary school in 1992, I began my working life. Alongside several unrelated jobs, I chose to spend the majority of my first career in the leisure and fitness industry as a pool lifeguard, fitness instructor and freelance personal fitness trainer. Over a career spanning nearly a decade, I acquired an abundance of professionally recognised health and fitness related qualifications.

From the start of my fitness career to the present day, I have endured countless swimming events, Triathlons, Marathons and other intense endurance events around the country, including the notorious Hellrunner, aka ‘Hell Down South’, a gruelling eleven mile trail run in which participants wade through chest-deep water, scale hills and power through rough terrain, all on a cold winter’s morning.

During my fitness career, I had the pleasure of coaching many clients with a variety of goals in mind, including weight loss, strength training, stamina and endurance. I also trained clients to physically prepare for a variety of selection processes ahead of joining the Emergency Services, Royal Marines, Parachute Regiment, and other disciplined services that require exceptional fitness levels.

dark side 1In September 2000, while working for Royal Mail and as a personal fitness trainer, I decided my ambition to become a paramedic was within my league of possible achievements, and so I gave up self-employment but continued to ‘walk the streets’ as a postman. To aid my career goal, I enrolled on a college course to improve my exam grades.

During the early stages of the course, I went that extra mile and joined the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) and, after ten or so ninety-minute sessions with an IAM observer, and a two hour driving test examined by a class one traffic cop, I was awarded an Advanced Driving certificate.

While still working as a postman, I signed up to temping agencies and worked in factories, packing boxes, picking orders, and removing unusable peanuts from a moving carousel! Those extra hours of work were in order to fund the fees to obtain category C1 and D1 on my driving licence, which I needed before applying to join the Mersey Regional Ambulance Service.

The Dark Side real life paramedic storiesFollowing the lengthy and demanding selection process, my application was successful and I commenced employment with the Mersey Regional Ambulance Service in June 2002, which later merged with the Cumbria, Greater Manchester and Lancashire Ambulance Services to form the Northwest Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

I rapidly progressed from the Patient Transport Service (PTS) to qualified Paramedic status via Ambulance Technician training, experience gained in the job and further extended training, where, upon qualifying, I was presented with a ‘Professional Paramedic Development Award’ for most improved candidate.

In 2005 I registered with the Health Professions Council (HPC), the national governing body for UK paramedics; this changed its name to the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) in August 2012.

I spent the earlier part of my career working in the English counties of Cheshire and Merseyside. In 2007, after living 'up north' for 32 years, I relocated down south with my wife and two children, residing there until we relocated to North Yorkshire in September 2013. There, I continued my career as an NHS Paramedic with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service until October 2015.

Content that I'd enjoyed an incredibly rewarding career, and very proud to have saved many lives and made a significant difference to countless others, I decided to 'hang up' my stethoscope and explore other projects. I currently spend the majority of my working week doing what I enjoy the most… writing.

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Now in Paperback

The Dark Side paramedic book in paperback

A Bit About Me

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Latest Release!

A new book from Andy tls slide269x395Thompson that will have you laughing out loud, then wondering if you should!