A former Hong Kong Government Chemist and head of Hong Kong’s Forensic Science Laboratory, I have over thirty years’ experience in scientific crime investigation. On retirement to Tuscany, I fulfilled a life-long ambition by studying art restoration. My wife Gail and I now share our time mainly between Italy, England and Thailand, all wonderful places to indulge our joint passion for writing.


A former forensic scientist and Hong Kong Government Chemist, I studied for my bachelors and doctorate degrees in chemistry at the University of Nottingham, after which I joined the West Midlands Forensic Science Laboratory in Birmingham, England.

Hong Kong
After three years learning the nuances of the trade, I followed an ambition to work overseas by taking a post as a forensic scientist in the Hong Kong Government Laboratory. The lure and excitement of the Far East proved very strong and twenty-eight years later I was still there, retiring eventually as Hong Kong’s last expatriate Government Chemist in 2004.

From Hong Kong, my wife, the children’s book author and illustrator Gail Clarke, and I moved to the wilds of Tuscany where we set about taming our three acres of land. At the same time, we took steps to improve our Italian and I also embarked on a course of study and work experience in art restoration.

… and everywhere
However, we found they still missed many aspects of the Far East and we had a yearning to rediscover England after so many years away. Having decided there was no reason why we couldn’t embrace the lot while still pursuing our writing, we now share our time largely between England and Tuscany with winter forays to Thailand.

As a forensic scientist, my caseload covered a wide range of crimes, including homicides, kidnappings and fire investigations, the work often starting at a crime scene and finishing with the presentation of expert evidence in court. This background and my more recent forays into the world of art restoration were drawn on extensively in writing both the Rare Traits Trilogy and the Cotton & Silk Thrillers.

I am also the author of a non-fictional work, Hong Kong Under The Microscope, an account of the one hundred and twenty-five-year history of the Hong Kong Government Laboratory from 1879-2004.