One man’s fight against the Taliban bomb-makers

The most highly decorated bomb disposal expert in the British Army is to visit the University of Wolverhampton to present a guest lecture.

Kim Hughes was awarded the George Cross in 2010 following a gruelling six-month tour of duty in Afghanistan during which he defused 119 improvised explosive devices, survived numerous Taliban ambushes and endured a close encounter with the Secretary of State for Defence. 

Kim, who attended Thomas Telford School, will present a free public lecture at the University on Tuesday, 13 March 2018 at 1pm. All are welcome to attend the event in the Chancellor’s Hall at the Wolverhampton City Campus.

Professor George Kassimeris, Chair in Security Studies at the University, said: “This will be a talk about science, bombs, and what happens to the human psyche when every day you go to work might be your last.

“The back drop to Kim Hughes’ lecture is the Afghan War, the conflict where the cold courage of the bomb disposal operator rose to national prominence. No other field of warfare offers the chance of a single individual to come so close to his enemy and fight out a battle of wits where losing can mean death.”

Warrant Officer Class 1 Kim Hughes, GC is a British Army bomb disposal expert (Ammunition Technician) who was awarded the George Cross as a staff sergeant for gallant acts carried out in the Afghanistan conflict. 

The citation was presented to Hughes by the Chief of the Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Jock Stirrup on 18 March 2010 in a ceremony in the City of London. His citation states that he carried out "the single most outstanding act of explosive ordnance disposal ever recorded in Afghanistan".

Hughes was born in Germany, where his father was serving in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, and returned to England in 1985. He lived in Weston-super-Mare until 1988 when he moved to Telford. There he was educated at Thomas Telford School.

His autobiography, Painting the Sand, was published in June 2017 and is an international bestseller. Kim Hughes will sign copies of his book at the end of the lecture at the discounted price of £10 (RRP £18.99).

Further information

Picture: Kim Hughes GC

For more information please contact the Media Relations Office on 01902 32 2736 or 01902 518647.

Date Issued: Thursday, 1 March 2018

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