Bob Jones

I’m Bob Jones, I live in Heckmondwike, 67 yrs of age and retired, which gives me lots of time to indulge my hobbies, and to go on holiday, to the extent we now call it going travelling, we do it so often.

How Long Diving and Why?

I had a mid-life crisis about 20 years ago and decided to go and do things I had been unable to do in my younger years, through lack of money, time, work, family, all the usual suspects. Happily, that did not involve leaving my wife, Frances, indeed she joined in. That resulted in learning to dive, with Robin Hood Watersports. We learnt together, and dived together, we included diving in many holidays all over the world as part of what could be called ‘cultural’ (horrible word that) holidays to Africa, the Middle East, Mexico, South America. And of course all around the UK.

Club Membership?

I have been a member of this Club for about 3 years, having dived independently and with a previous Club. I joined because this Club actually goes diving, rather than talks about it.

Favourite UK Dive Site?

My favourite UK dive is the James Egan Layne, out of Plymouth, it is brilliant, on a good day like swimming in an aquarium, the block ships at Scapa are a close second.

Best Kit?

My best bit of kit is my Regulator, I treasure it, polish it, speak nicely to it, it keeps me alive! Funniest

Narcosis moment?

Whilst I have suffered Nitrogen Narcosis, I take it a bit seriously, and so cannot joke much about it, if it is dark it makes me frightened, if it is light, I just don’t give a damn, which in retrospect is just as bad. I watched someone curing a free flow on his main regulator at 40 metres by beating it against a rock, when it stopped, he put it back in and carried on down to 45 metres. Not good.

Qualifications?

I am qualified as a BSAC Advanced diver (although I am no longer a member of BSAC), which permits me to go to 50 metres.

Best Dive Experience?

I have lost track of the number of fabulous dives, sometimes it is the sight of a wreck as you descend on to it, others marine life from the tiniest jewel anenomies to white tip reef sharks. The key thing is to slow down and really look. I have to say the best dives were with Frances (she no longer dives for health reasons) simply because I was diving with my best friend.

How Often Do I Dive?

I go on about 7 or 8 dive trips per year, with the Club, most 2 or 3 days, an odd one-day outing, and sometimes for a week abroad. In addition, I try to go to an inland site once per month during the winter just to keep my hand in.

Best Dive Buddy?

You already know who my best dive buddy was (she will read this) I shall avoid saying who is the best amongst the people I dive with, I might need them someday! Perhaps the most frequent, but a long way second after Frances is probably Tom, despite his propensity to concentrate on his camera and forget to stick with his buddy, anyone diving with a photographer might as well be diving alone, you have to watch them like a hawk!

Advice to Anyone Considering Diving?

If you can, do. Go get professional tuition, most Clubs mess about and take far too long to teach new divers, and the quality of tuition is at best patchy, and sometimes downright dangerous. When you have learnt the basics, join a Club that actually goes diving, frequently. (You don’t have to go on every trip), and try to team up as often as you can with an experienced diver so you can learn from him/her.

Steve Free

My name is Stephen (Steve to friends). I live in Bradford and I’m in my early 50’s.

How long have you been diving?

I started diving in 2006 after a try dive in Gran Canaria. I passed my open water in 2007.

What made you want to become a scuba diver?

I took up diving because I loved seeing the marine life and being underwater.

Number of Dives?

I have done over 420 dives.

What’s the best thing you’ve seen whilst diving?

The best thing I’ve seen underwater is an Anglerfish off the Isle of May in 2017.

Favourite UK dive site?

My favourite dive site is the Rhondo in the sound of Mull.

Best piece of dive kit?

My best piece of kit is my Tec 3 regulators, so smooth to breathe on.

How often do you dive?

I try to dive frequently but unfortunately not as often as I’d like, but love every dive I do regardless.

Ambition?

I have two ambitions, to continue diving and eventually get on a Red Sea Liveaboard.

Who is your go-to dive buddy?

I don’t have a regular buddy now as my favourite buddy retired from diving, Stephen Stapleton, I miss our dives together.

What would you like to share with people who are considering scuba diving?

If thinking of taking up diving go with a reputable company like Robin Hood Watersports. Once qualified dive as often as possible and pick as many divers brains as you can for tips and recommendations on kit and places to dive.

Tim Saville

Hi, I’m Tim and age is just a number. It’s not how many times the wheels have been round, it’s the state of the engine that matters.

Member since?

2003

Dived since?

1997

Number of Dives?

1900

Qualifications?

PADI OC Trimix Instructor, TDI MOD 3 Rebreather Diver.

What started you diving?

Bored on my honeymoon, had a try dive in the pool and then got divorced.

Best dive?

It hasn’t happened yet. I’m booked on to dive the HMHS Britannic in October 2018 and I’ve got a visit to Bikini Atoll in 2019. So far it would be the San Francisco Maru in Truk Lagoon.

Ambition?

To dive the HMHS Britannic (better not get blown out!).

Funniest narcosis moment?

Mistaking a rubber inner tube for a conger eel whilst at 30m on Somali wreck at the Farne Islands. In life before helium.

How often do I dive?

I average around 150 dives a year, works out about 3 a week. I need to get wet regularly to avoid drying out.

Best piece of dive kit?

AP Inspiration Rebreather without a doubt.

Best buddy?

It has to be Liz, my wife, she knows me better than anyone, she is my conscience and voice of reason. Sometimes I need it.