Kevin was resident in Kenya for many years with a particular interest in the region’s military and transport history. His first major publication STEAM IN EAST AFRICA concerned the construction and development of the East African railway system. Numerous articles for recognised journals included the notorious Death Railway in Burma and the devastating explosion that destroyed Bombay Docks in April 1944 and latterly the Victorian and First World War naval campaigns along the East Africa Coast.

Kevin took up diving in 1961 while serving in the Royal Air Force. An overseas posting to Malta in 1967 started an interest in the discovery and research of crashed World War II aircraft including the Spitfire MkV currently on display in the Malta War Museum.

On return to England in 1970 he continued his discovery and research of shipwrecks and aircraft around the Cornish coast. On completion of his time in the service he passed a commercial diving course and returned to East Africa to work as a freelance diver in Mombasa, involved in the salvage of a number of vessels on the Kenya coast before becoming a full time commercial diver in the Persian Gulf in 1977.

After two years in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, he helped establish a marine company specialising in chartering, brokering, diving and salvage. During the next three years the company undertook a wide variety of tasks in the region including refloating stranded ships, removing wrecks and recovering anchors in deep water.

In 1982 he became Managing Director of DIVECON in Mombasa, the diving company he freelanced for ten years earlier. A hectic two years of diving and salvage work followed in the Comores, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar,Tanzania, Uganda, Yemen and Zanzibar.

On completion of his contract in 1984 he returned to Bahrain and established TECHDIVE. He was involved in numerous successful salvage operations ranging from yachts to large tankers and bulk carriers apart from routine inspection, maintenance and construction work around the Gulf.

In the 1990’s he wrote a trilogy on the history of Zanzibar and STEAM TWILIGHT, a sequel to his first railway book. The latest book on the KONIGSBERG was the result of over twenty years research.

After twenty-two years in the diving and salvage business he is now resident in the U.K., and a consultant diver on a number of projects in the Middle East and East Africa.

A new book, “The Lunatic Line”, is is preparation on the building of the Uganda Railway, 1896 – 1901, illustrated with the original construction pictures from the Railway Museum Archives in Nairobi

Read a guest article by Kevin Patience and click here to buy his books.

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