Imagine living in a box at the bottom of the sea for a month at a time. Locked away in a saturation chamber, plumbed to depths of more than 500 feet, this has been David Beckett's love, life and work for all his adult life. Destined to become a pig farmer in the late 1960s, a twist of fate saw David become an air diver, and within a short space of time he progressed to saturation diving. He would brush with death on more than one occasion - not least when helping to recover 47 bodies of the victims of the Sumburgh chinook disaster in Scotland's Shetland Islands - and when called in to assist with the deadliest peacetime shipwreck in Europe, as the MS Estonia sank in the Baltic Sea in 1994 and claimed 852 lives. Amongst the depths of despair, there are many lighter moments, including treasure hunting in the Philippines, almost clinching a contract to salvage the bursar's safe from the Titanic and surviving a 24-hour typhoon which brought 80-foot waves crashing down on his boat. The Loonliness of a Deep Sea Diver is gritty, sometimes comical and offers a unique glimpse into a life at sea, much of it at the bottom.
David Beckett collaborated with acclaimed writer Paul Zanon to write his book. Paul is the author of number one bestseller, Jimmy Tibbs - Sparring With Life, and also The Yorkshire Hunter, the autobiography of former double world boxing champion Paul Ingle, whose career came to an abrupt end after a devastating brain injury. He's also been writing for the Daily Sport since 2012 as their boxing correspondent, in addition to writing for Boxing Monthly.