A veteran of the Falklands War, Simon Weston CBE is a professional motivational speaker with nearly thirty years’ experience. With irrepressible humour, he speaks about overcoming adversity and positive mental attitude as well as his experiences of being in the public eye for the last three decades.
His humour, infectious enthusiasm and engaging personality have made him a firm favourite with many companies who invite him back to speak again and again.
When the RFA Sir Galahad was destroyed in the Bluff Cove Air Attack during the Falklands War, Simon was severely injured, sustaining serious burns to 46% of his body. He has become well-known across the United Kingdom and abroad for his struggle to overcome his injuries and redefine his role in life, and his message is one of achievement, of triumph in the face of adversity, and of seizing the moment and succeeding.
Simon’s road to recovery, both physical, mental and spiritual, has seen him active in various highly successful projects, among them Liverpool-based youth charity The Weston Spirit.
His bravery and charitable work have earned him several awards and honours; he earned an OBE in the 1992 Queen’s Birthday Honours and has been awarded the Freedom of the City of Liverpool in 2002. He has also been honoured as one of the top 100 Welsh Heroes in 2004, and in 2014, in a survey by Freud Communications, he was voted top of the UK Heroes Index, naming him the Nation’s Favourite Hero.
Simon was President for Wales Scouting for two years and is currently the Patron of the Falklands Veterans Foundation, The Enham Trust, Allied Service Trust, and an Ambassador for Changing Faces. Most recently, he has helped set up Care After Combat, a charity for veterans.
Simon’s story is well-known throughout the UK, and he has been the subject of five BBC documentaries: “Simon’s War” (1983), “Simon’s Peace” (1985), Simon’s Triumph” (1989), “Simon’s Return” (1992), and “Simon’s Journey” (1999). More recently, after BBC One viewers nominated him to have his portrait painted and hung in the National Portrait Gallery, a BBC documentary followed him in the process of having the portrait painted.
As well as appearing on television, Simon has written several books, both fiction and nonfiction. His autobiography “Walking Tall” and the sequel “Going Back” were both bestsellers. His most recent book, “Moving On” details his final return to the Falklands and sees him lay his ghosts to rest. His fiction books include such titles as “Cause of Death” and “Phoenix” as well as four children’s books in the “Nelson” series.
In 2015, Simon embarked on a twenty-date theatre tour across the UK, which is likely to expand into 2016 given the success of it so far.
Dealing with challenges
Liking the person you are
“Simon was a huge success. People are still talking about it and everyone I've spoken to found Simon's address really inspirational and very moving. His remarks about rehabilitation had particular resonance with the delegates and he pitched everything perfectly. It was just right for our conference” – April 2015 (conference in Cardiff)
“Simon was absolutely amazing, as I am sure you are aware. The feedback has been extremely positive!” – April 2015 (conference in Boston)
“Simon was such an inspiration. After all that he has been through his positive outlook on life really made me sit up and think. His added humour made it even more enjoyable.” – March 2015 (Housing association)
“He was such an inspiration and moved everyone with his courage, determination and passion to help young people succeed. Delegates were talking about him all day and into the evening last night. He truly made an indelible mark on us all.” – March 2015
“The audience was spellbound and everyone marked Simon in the highest category (excellent) in the feedback forms. I don’t think we could have chosen anyone better to bring our conference to a close.” – February 2015 – Headteachers Conference