Neil is an accomplished motivational and humorous after dinner speaker and professional MC. He is a witty, determined, passionate Scot who tells it how it is. He is totally blind and has been since his teenage years.
Educated at Sunnybank Primary School in Aberdeen before attending Powis Academy, which he describes as one of his worst experiences, but the one that toughened him up and gave him the steel to face anything.
Steel is certainly something he has in abundance, as someone who braved sub 40-degree temperatures to trek to Everest Base Camp and the raging heat of the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco as well as bagging over 65 Munros in Scotland, some of which were completed in winter conditions. Not noted for being the fastest thing on two legs, he has however done the 3-Peaks Challenge and to prove his steel, this was done only 3 weeks after falling in the Cairn Gourms and fracturing his ribs and smashing his kneecap. Neil also completed the Flora London Marathon in 1999 and still takes part in 10k’s in and around the North East of Scotland. Neil is also a major fundraiser for the Grampian Society for the Blind.
Neil recognizes that to achieve these remarkable feats as someone without sight would be impossible without the support of many sighted helpers to lend a guiding arm along the way and he has met some amazing inspirational characters during his adventures.
As well as sighted helpers, Neil also states that nothing could have been achieved without being able to laugh and wherever possible, he tries to inject humor into every thing he does and this comes across in his motivational talks or after dinner addresses.
He states “when you can’t see what’s going on around you, you need to be able to laugh about things as crying is far too messy”.
Neil has worked alongside such famous names as Peter Alliss, Alex Salmond, Tommy Docherty and Christy O’Connor Jnr and still states that when he worked with the late Fred Trueman it was one of his proudest moments.
“Neil has his own brand of humour, is witty and good fun with come good self humiliation which is most entertaining” William Lippe, Chairman Inverurie Loco Works FC
“Can’t recommend him highly enough and think he is a wonderful example to everyone on how to deal with life” J Stewart Spence, Owner, Marcliffe Hotel