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  • Meet the Team and About Us

About Us

Thank you for taking the time to visit our website, we hope you find it informative and interesting?

We are a small, independent and privately owned PADI Scuba Diving and Travel Centre designed specifically for the more discerning customer. We pride ourselves on our service, flexibility, resourcefulness and imagination allowing us to create diving courses and holidays that really are tailormade to your requirements, no matter how demanding they might be. In 2010 and 2012 we won 'UK Dive Centre of the Year'.

Meet the Team

mark-murphy

Mark Murphy

Master Scuba Diver Trainer and Founder

Having worked as a Dive Instructor in the Virgin Islands, Thailand and Egypt, Mark returned to the UK in 2006 when he founded Oyster Diving. His principle aims for the new diving centre would be to appeal to the more discerning customer by offering the best facilities, having an integrated travel agency so customers can complete their dives abroad as well as in the UK. In 2010 Mark won Sport Diver magazines' 'Best Diving Instructor'.

Favourite destination?
Djibouti - On one dive I was surrounded by five Whale Sharks and ended up in the mouth of one of them. Thank goodness they only eat plankton!

Favourite Dive Site?
Shark Reef in Egypt - I was still fairly new to diving and it was the dive that changed my life forever. Being surrounded by a school of circling barracuda's, I was only feet away from about three feeding 6 foot long Black Tip sharks. One of the sharks swam right passed me with a Barracuda hanging out of it's mouth as if to show off it's prize. I didn't feel at all threatened and it made me appreciate the beauty and value of sharks in the wild.

Favourite marine life?
I'm a huge fan of sharks but I also love Turtles, Bat Fish and can spend hours playing with Clown Fish (Nemo).

Which countries have you dived in?
Australia, Portugal, UK, Egypt, Djibouti, Lanzarote, France, Maldives, Cayman Islands, Malta & Gozo, Tobago, Mexico, Virgin Islands, Aruba, Thailand and Barbados.

Equipment
Aqua Lung Sphera mask, Aqua Lung Axiom BCD, Apeks Tungsten regulators, Mares Quattro fins, Suunto D6i computer, Ocean Reef full facemask, Aqua Lung Comfort wetsuit, Aqua Lung Fusion Sport with SLT dry suit

nikki irvine

Nikki Irvine

Director of Oyster Diving Shop & Rescue Diver

Nikki came to Oyster Diving a few years ago to learn to dive with her partner. She immediately fell in love with the Sport and wanted to get involved. With many years at a senior level for some of the top luxury online fashion retailers, she decided that she could put her expertise to good use by running and launching www.oysterdivingshop.com.

Favourite Destination
Although a big fan of 'Wraysbury Reef', I will never forget the Cenotes in Mexico, the world's largest underwater cave system. The colours of changing light and the feeling of floating in space was truly out of the this world.

Favourite Marine Life
Seals - they behave like little puppies and are just as cute!

Which countries have you dives?
UK, Mexico and Red Sea

Equipment
Atomic mask, Bare 5mm wetsuit, Aqua Lung Fusion Fit Dry Suit, Aqua Lung Legend LX regulators, Suunto EON Steel computer

Andy

Andy Mangold

Master Scuba Diver Trainer and Admin Manager

After a Big Mac and large fries, Andy's favourite hobby is checking out the historical WWII wrecks around the coast of Britain. Andy is also in charge of the website and other forms of communication. Despite being the communications officer it appears Andy is a man of few words:

Favourite destination
Red Sea - 'The Best of Wrecks' liveaboard itinerary

Favourite marine life
Nudibranch (because it sounds rude)

Which countries you have dived in?
Spain, Florida, Red Sea, Mexico, US and England.

Equipment
Aqua Lung Favola mask, Fusion Bullet Dry Suit, Apeks Black Sapphire Regs, ScubaPro BCD, Suunto D9 computer

Melvin

Melvin Grant

PADI IDC Staff Instructor

Melvin is a highly experienced PADI instructor who is renowned for his patience, friendliness and good sense of humour. He is just as happy teaching children to dive as adults. At the 2012 Sport Dive Awards he came runner-up as 'PADI Instructor of the Year'.

Favourite destination
Red Sea - for the clear blue waters, varied marine life and there are plenty of sandy bottoms (you'll have to ask him but it's not rude!).

Favourite marine life
He loves small macro marine life and can spend hours studying a small coral pinnacle to find what's lurking in the nooks and crannies.

Which countries you have dived in?
Malta, Cuba, Maldives, Cyprus, Mexico, Tenerife, Lanzarote, Red Sea and the UK

Equipment
Mares Liquidvision mask, OThree Drysuit, Aqua Lung Axiom BCD, Apeks XTX 50 regulators, Bare wetsuit

Taffs photo

Lynn 'Taff' Garland

PADI IDC Staff Instructor

Taff is a really helpful and hard working member of the team. He has lots of patience and is very approachable. He likes to record the Rugby and watch it on his return from his courses, so make sure you tell him the Wales score as soon as you can, he will be very appreciative!

Favourite destination
Tenerife

Favourite marine life
Rays and Sha

Which countries you have dived in?
Malta, Tenerife, Lanzarote, UK and Red Sea

Fern Goldsmith Scuba Diving Instructor

Fern Goldsmith

PADI Open Water Scuba and EFR Instructor

Fern took her first breath underwater while travelling in Malaysia and hasn't looked back! Six months later she trained to be an instructor in Honduras, where she taught backpackers and school kids before moving to Cambodia to manage the dive operations for a conservation charity. Since returning to the UK in 2014 Fern has embraced cold water diving and genuinely loves teaching in pools and cooler water. Since joining us she has become a great asset to the team as is really good at teaching customers who require a little more attention.

Favourite Destination
Lundy Island - playing with seals underwater was just magical

Favourite marine life
Can happily spend hours looking for small creatures among the coral, rocks and sand, but also longs to see a Hammerhead and a whale shark.


Which countries have you dived in?

Malaysia, Honduras, Cambodia and UK (including Scapa Flow in Scotland)

 

jessica swan dive instructor

Jessica Swan

PADI Open Water Scuba and EFR Instructor

I became a diving instructor when in Durban South Africa when I did my open water and loved it, So asked if I could do an internship and stayed there for a year cleaning equipment, washing wetsuits, being the rescue dummy, pushing out and cleaning dive boats until I got my dives up and could do my instructors.

Favourite Destination

Sodwanna bay South Africa.

In South Africa we are very lucky to have a huge selection of marine life including sharks, turtles, dolphins, eels, whale shark and a huge selection of rays. On my first dive in Sodwanna Bay I saw all of these in a one 1 hour dive.

Favourite Marine Life
Whale Shark -They frighten people by their size but they are amazing underwater and you can get very close to them.

Which countries have you dived in? 
South Africa, India, France, Mozambique and England.

paul gisby

Paul Gisby

PADI Open Water Scuba, EFR and Deptherapy Education Adaptive Teaching Scuba Instructor

Paul has been diving for many years and is experienced in diving in the UK and overseas.

Since joining Oyster in 2013 Paul's dive career has progressed through to professional level. Paul is an Open Water Diving Instructor and is also a qualified specialist Instructor in Deptherapy Education Adaptive teaching, a rare specialist qualification designed to encourage disabled people to also engage in the sport of Scuba Diving. Paul has been diving for nearly 30 years so has a wealth of experience.

Favourite Destination?
Paul loves it down under and is partial to a bit of Egypt too.

Favourite Marine Life
Sharks and Turtles

Which countries have you dived in?
England, Wales, Red Sea, Malta, Australia, Thailand and Egypt

Liz Stokes

Liz Stokes

Rescue Diver & Surface Cover

Liz has been diving for nearly 10 years and last year took her Rescue course with Oyster and has since gone on to be our surface cover at the Marshall Street pool every Tuesday and weekends at Wraysbury

Favourite destination?
Favourites so far are Central and South America, with so many more on the list to see, but sunshine and a shortie wetsuit are a must!  I also love diving in Egypt, Jackson Reef and Gordon Reef, off Ras Nosrani Bay in Sharm el Sheikh, I could never tire of diving there, it is where I qualified and have visited many times since, definitely a special place for me

Favourite marine life?
Turtles and of course it’s always amazing to spot a shark.

Which countries have you dived in?
Egypt, Costa Rica, Colombia, US, UK, Italy, Cape Verde
philippe-lechance

Philippe LeChance

PADI Divemaster

Philippe is our friendly Canadian with a dodgy accent and likes to take taxi's everywhere. He's always the first to be in his dive kit, hates to get cold and loves to give students a hand.

Favourite destination
The Maldives, its one of the best places in the world to spot Whale Sharks and Manta Rays.

Favourite marine life
Mermaids

Which countries you have dived in?
Maldives, UK, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, Red Sea and Bali

alex spencer divemaster

Alex Spencer

Divemaster and Discover Scuba Leader

We taught Alex to dive when he was just 10 years old and has since gone on to do his Divemaster course with us. When not at University he teaches many of our Discover Scuba and Refresher courses. He is polite, friendly and has a definate cheeky side.

"The stand-out moment of my dive career so far has to be a close encounter with an oceanic white-tip shark. I remember being told that above all else you shouldn’t go above the shark as they feel threatened if you do, but in my excitement a big gulp of air sent me soaring above it… luckily he’d had his breakfast. Boss Mark took a cracking video of it all."

Favourite destination
The Red Sea is hands-down my favourite diving destination, and it’s great to see that more coastline is opening up to divers with some great reviews of places like Sudan from some diving hotshots. Well worth a look at the live-aboards being offered out there with Oyster!

Favourite marine life
You can’t beat the majestic whale shark. What a big fish. And because they love being near the surface, it’s an animal that can be enjoyed by the non-divers among us too!

Which countries you have dived in?
I’ve been lucky to dive around the world from the Maldives, to the Red Sea and Malta, to the Caribbean. Nothing quite as good as Wraysbury though..?

Equipment
Avanti quattro+ fins, Apeks XTX 200 regs, Scubapro X-Force BCD (tough as nails!), Suunto Viper Air.

 


 

Diving in London & South East

If you are starting out on your diving journey or looking to improve your skills we offer a range of PADI diving courses in London and across the South East.  Our locations can be found in Soho, Surrey & Berkshire, Brighton & Hove, Oxford and our Open Water diving locations.



Diving Centre

Despite having dozens of historical wrecks dotted along our coastline and some fantastic and varied marine life, we understand that diving in the UK is not for everyone. We are happy for you to complete a Referral course which means that you complete your theory and pool skills with us and your open water dives when you get on holiday. That way you don't have to spend your valuable holiday time sat in a classroom and instead can spend it under the sun or water! 

Using our extensive knowledge of the best places in the world to dive and visit, many of our customers ask us to arrange their holiday or a long weekend to complete their diving course, so as part of the service we offer a fully bonded travel agency.

Travel Centre

We've trotted the globe to find the best holiday and diving destinations that offer a combination of extravagance, exclusivity, privacy and natural beauty.

So whether you are gearing up for your first dive, need a long weekend break, want to charter a luxury yacht in the Caribbean or bathe on the finest golden beaches, Oyster can build a package specifically around you.

For more details call us today on 0800 699 0243 or 01273 420790.

Many thanks and we hope to start or continue your underwater adventures soon,

Mark Murphy

Mark Murphy

Director and PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer

PADI SCUBA DIVING AND HOLIDAY CENTRE

0800 699 0243
01273 420790
  07920 516006
info@oysterdiving.com

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Oyster Luxury Travel and Diving: West London, Soho Central London, Brighton & Hove, Surrey & Berkshire and Oxford

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