Major Phil Ashby
    (£3,000 - £5,000)
... Return to previous page


Phil Ashby is a genuine hero. His autobiography ‘Unscathed’ (published by Macmillan) rocketed into the bestseller list and was made into a major feature film with Hollywood giants, Miramax.

While serving in the Royal Marines he volunteered for a 6-month tour with the United Nations as a Peace Keeper in war-torn Sierra Leone. Rebel forces brought the mission to a violent and bloody end when they restarted the country’s civil war, turning on the UN’s representatives, torturing and butchering them and taking over 500 hostages. Phil and other UN workers found themselves in the middle of this, ambushed and surrounded in a small compound.

After four days of physical and psychological bombardment, including throwing the blood-stained uniforms of fellow UN workers over the walls they realised there was no hope of rescue. Phil came up with a daring escape plan and the decision was made to risk being killed trying to.

At 2.45am the next morning, faces blackened with charcoal, he led his team over the wall. Vastly outnumbered by the rebels, and unarmed, their chances of escaping alive were very slim. Despite trekking day and night through some of the world’s toughest jungle terrain for almost a week without food or water, Phil found the courage and strength to lead his colleagues on a daring and dramatic race to freedom through the hostile jungle. He was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal for his actions.

On his return to Britain, he was rushed to hospital, paralysed from the waist down. He had brought home a memento of the West African jungle in the form of a virus lodged in his spinal cord. He had to face a whole new set of challenges personally and professionally, including re-learning how to walk. He has now recovered almost entirely and is only numb from the knee downwards, which hasn’t stopped him being as active as ever.

Commissioned into The Royal Marines at just seventeen and a half, making him the youngest officer in HM Armed Forces, he won his Green Beret one-week after his 18th birthday. Phil was sponsored by the Marines to read Engineering at Pembroke College, Cambridge. He has climbed all over the world and survived an epic 2-man rowing expedition in the Arctic Ocean. This was the first - and only – human-powered circumnavigation of the polar island of Spits Bergen. One thousand miles of rowing through ice floes for eight weeks in a 17-foot, open-topped wooden boat. He survived becoming trapped in the pack ice, a polar bear attack, hurricane force winds and capsizing in icy water.


Phil Ashby has collected numerous accolades since graduating from Cambridge in 1991. As a Royal Marine, he has been awarded the Commando medal, served as Troop Commander around the globe, served as Captain with the Parachute Regiment in the UK, Norway and Northern Ireland, and, as Major, was posted to Sierra Leone to work with the United Nations as a Military Observer. After a further fifteen months of Royal Marines officer training in 1992, Phil won the Commando medal for ‘Leadership, Unselfishness, Cheerfulness, Determination and Courage’. He has completed a Masters' Degree at the Royal Military College of Science and is a regular broadcaster and public speaker.


Make an enquiry

Wish List

View my wish list
Add To Wishlist

Choosing a Speaker

Parliament Communications presents about 500 conference and after dinner speakers on this web site. If you have not been able to find the ideal speaker for your event, please call +44 (0)1202 24 24 24. We have access to thousands of other speakers covering business, economics, politics, sport, adventure, technology, etc. We can offer speakers to motivate, inspire, inform, entertain, host, chair and make your event memorable! So much more than a virtual database of speakers, Parliament has experienced staff who are ready to help you choose the perfect speaker for your event.

Speaker Downloads

When you have booked your speaker from Parliament, you may be able to use this facility to download the speaker's presentation material.

Speaker Terms uses these keywords to help you find the best speakers for your event. In the Search screen there is a facility to search these keywords for every speaker on the web site. If you do not find a speaker matching a keyword that you think we should be using, please let us know by e-mail or call Parliament on +44 (0)1202 24 24 24

After dinner speaker, entertainment, raconteur, anecdote, anecdotal, light hearted, Keynote speaker, main speaker, address,Host, compere, mc, master of ceremonies, link, Host, compere, mc, master of ceremonies, link, Parliament, parliamentspeakers, communications, speakers, bureau, agents, management, conference, event, corporate, presentation, present, parliment, parlament, guest, guest speaker, book, engage, major phil ashby, survivor,