He was born in Cardiff in 1947, and started his life in scuba diving after visiting Iceland, then moving to Oslo in Norway where he worked as an instructor. He ended up co-owning three scuba diving centres there. This was a time when the North Sea oil industry was in its infancy and training was needed for crews on the supply boats who acted as in water safety teams for the rigs. Having supplied the rigs the supply boats then circle the rigs until new boats relieved them. They stayed there in case workers on the rigs fell in to the sea. as, he said, half the Norwegian fishermen manning these boats could hardly swim. During this period he helped train crews in “cold water survival and in water rescue techniques”
At this time the recreational diving industry organisations in Norway were looking at modernising the way of teaching diving and the PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructor) organisation was introduced to Scandinavia. PADI Instructors have safely guided divers below the surface for over 50 years. Teaching the world’s most popular dive curriculum, they transform lives, and open hearts and minds to the hidden beauty of nature’s creation and our obligation to protect it.
Doug went on telling how he then spent years teaching scuba diving instructors for PADI all over the world before finally moving to Bristol, where PADI opened its U.K. office. This was 25 years ago when they started with just six of them and now there are over one hundred people working for PADI in Bristol.
Doug is looking forward to his year as President of Chelwood Bridge Rotary Club. He said : “Each president supports a special charity of their choice during their year of office, but I thought I might do something a bit different, “ he said.
“Instead of having a single charity our focus in the coming year will be on how our actions can ‘Change a life.’
The main focus of my year as President will be to make a difference to individual lives, be that in the local community or on an international front.
This will be achieved through our main committees and their work in identifying people in need within our community and internationally while suggesting service projects suitable for our club.
We are also working with WERN, who have already identified several people in need, who we will be helping.
Our first fund raising event ,” he added, ”will be an Auction of Promises that will take place early in the new year.” Ros Anstey