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Me and the boysI was born and raised in Wallsend, Tyne & Wear - once the world capital of ship-building. The cranes remain but both myself and the ships are now long gone. Every so often I return to the North East for client engagements and these oppportunities are very, very greatly welcomed. Back in 2001 I migrated south to Yorkshire where I now live with my wife Debs and our two boys - Isaac and Ben.

The lads keep us occupied with activities and things to do - always fun to get a good walk in with Paddy our dog and the countryside around North Yorkshire affords us those opportunities. Whenever possible we take the chance to visit other parts of the country as well (the borders, Wales and Northumberland are always popular choices) and each has their own characteristics. Mostly it's just nice to spend time with the family wherever we are!

Paddy Our dog Paddy's the newest member of the family. He's a pure-bred Boxer and we got him in June 2011 from the lovely family who bred him in Nottinghamshire. He's red with a white chest and black mask. We were given to believe that he was going to be fairly small being the last of the litter born but after a few short months he towered above his brothers and sisters. He's still growing but one day I'd like to think his feet'll fit properly.

The boys love Paddy to little bits - as it would appear does the whole child community of York. His temperament is great and he's very well behaved as long as he doesn't see another dog or cat in which case he becomes a blur - a blur that is no longer able to hear or obey basic commands!

Paddy gets to walk up to the school most days with Debs to get the boys and Paddy gets to meet and greet everyone - whether or not they want to be greeted. Fair to say he can bet a bit over-excited but he tries ever so hard not to jump up.

He's very patient when it comes to kids as well - particularly our Ben whose fondness for Paddy results in him following him round the house, trying to sleep in his bed and hanging off his tail. Paddy takes it all very calmly no matter what is being committed against him.

Mountain BikingAswell as spending time with my family and the dog, I have more than a passing interest in mountain biking and mountain bikes. I have ridden all over the British Isles and Europe on a variety of terrain both competitively and for recreation.

I tend to have a "fleet" of bikes at my disposal - they change very frequently - and I'm lucky enough to own or have owned some of the world's most desirable bikes. From hardy trail bikes like my Orange Five and Lapierre Zesty to my light race bikes like my Yeti Arc or carbon Stumpjumper they are all specified and maintained to the highest degree.

The training season starts for me in January with a few events in and around Yorkshire and Lancashire before getting into the race season proper from April to September. Despite some reasonable placings over the last few seasons the thing which keeps me coming back is having fun - as long as I'm still doing that I'll be riding mountain bikes!

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