In a long and very chequered career, among a bewildering variety of other jobs, Neil Hanson has been an Oxford graduate, a plasterer’s mate, an ice cream salesman, a holiday camp redcoat and - simultaneously - an art critic and a rugby league commentator. He’s edited the boozer’s Bible - the Good Beer Guide - a job, he says, where it was practically a sacking offence not to go to the pub at lunchtime. He also ran, and later owned, Britain’s highest inn, in a remote corner of the Yorkshire Dales, went round the world twice and worked as a print journalist and radio broadcaster in Britain, Australia and New Zealand.
He is now a very successful author with over 60 published books to his name. As well as his own work, he’s also a “ghost writer” for, among others, sports stars, showbiz legends, captains of industry, SAS men, pilots, a treasure diver, an explorer, a kidnap negotiator, an undercover investigator and a spy.
An award winning speaker, he has entertained audiences at every type of occasion - corporate events, conferences, festivals, luncheon clubs, dinners and banquets - throughout the UK and in New York, Chicago, Washington DC, Kansas City, New Orleans, Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Auckland and Wellington
His after-dinner speech “Inn & Out at the Top” is a laugh-a-minute tour of the quirks and foibles, highs and lows of running Britain’s highest inn - so isolated that its next-door neighbour was 4 miles away and so high above sea level that it had its own climate, with winds that could tear car-doors off their hinges, and winter snows that cut off the inn for weeks on end.
A hugely engaging storyteller, Neil’s account of his time at the inn, grappling with tight-fisted farmers, eccentric characters, bizarre local customs, naturist weekends, “lates and lock-ins”, police raids by appointment, rats in the attic, close encounters with magistrates and planners, and the shooting of a famous double glazing commercial, is suitable for all audiences and all ages.