James Walker

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James Walker
James Walker.jpg
BornJanuary 1983 (age 41)
Alma mater

James Walker (born January 1983) is an English engineer, writer, physicist, a mining and public company executive, and a former soldier. He is best known for his first novel, ‘Above Instinct’.

Early life and education

Walker was born in January 1983 in Johannesburg, South Africa. His father was a commodities broker, from a Yorkshire military family, and his mother was a school teacher, from a Liverpudlian Civil Service family. When he was four years old, his family returned to England because of heightened political tensions within South Africa. Walker attended Silchester Church of England Primary School, followed by Ridgeway Primary School, until his family moved to Limassol, Cyprus, in 1991. His family remained in Cyprus until 1994, when they returned to Tewkesbury, England.

Walker attended Tewkesbury Comprehensive School, from 1994 until 1996, until passing the UK Assisted Places Scheme examinations, earning him a subsidised place at Malvern College. Walker attended Malvern College from 1996 until 2001.

Walker would later undertake a BSc in Mathematics with the Open University while operating his first business, until accepting a place at the University of Nottingham to study a BEng in Mechanical Engineering. After completing his Bachelor of Engineering in 2009, Walker attended the Camborne School of Mines, at the University of Exeter, completing an MSc in Mining Engineering in 2010.

After working with the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence (MoD), Walker was selected to undertake a Masters of Science in Nuclear Physics and Engineering at the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom and Cranfield University; completing the MSc in 2012. Walker was also sponsored by the MoD to complete qualifications in Project Management with the Association for Project Management in 2015.

Professional Career

After school Walker worked factory night shifts to afford the purchase of a window cleaning business. After purchasing the business, Walker attended night school after work, studying accountancy with the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT), to better manage his business. Walker sold his business in 2004, at the same time as completing the AAT qualification and becoming a qualified Accounting Technician. Walker worked as a cost accountant until 2005, after which he worked as the Senior Financial Manager until 2006. During this time Walker undertook a BSc in Mathematics with the Open University, with the intention of qualifying for a place at University to study Engineering.

After completing a BEng in Mechanical Engineering and an MSc in Mining Engineering, Walker was recruited by the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence in 2010, to work as an engineer within its nuclear weapons and nuclear submarines divisions. Walker would also serve as infantry reservist with the British Army, during his professional engineering and project management employment with the Ministry of Defence.

After completing a Masters of Science in Nuclear Physics and Engineering at the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom and Cranfield University in 2012, Walker was seconded to Rolls-Royce Nuclear, where he worked in the Thermal Hydraulics and Nuclear Physics departments, assisting in the design of the Next Generation of UK Nuclear Submarines.

Following Rolls-Royce Nuclear, Walker returned to the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence, taking an engineering project manager post, as the lead manager for constructing the new Rolls-Royce (RR) nuclear material recovery Chemical Plant. Walker also served as the Subject Matter Expert for the UK Nuclear Material Recovery Capability and was part of the technical team responsible for constructing the UK reactor core manufacturing facilities.

Walker left the British Army Reservists in 2015 and the Ministry of Defence in 2016, to pursue a mining career aboard. Walker emigrated to Canada in 2016, qualifying for Permanent Residency before arrival. Walker worked as mining project manager until taking over a publicly traded, junior mining company.

In 2020, Walker bought the only permitted Fluorspar mine in the United States, with the intention of returning the industry to the country and being its sole producer. Walker is also a Director of several other Canadian mining companies.

Military Service

Walker joined the British Army Reservists in 2009, applying to G Squadron of 23 Special Air Service Regiment (Reserve) (23 SAS(R)). He was attached to 4th Battalion, Mercian Regiment to complete Basic Training, also known as the Common Military Syllabus (Reserve) (CMS(R)) Course. Afterwards he completed the Combat Infantry Course (Reserve) (CIC (Res)) held at the Infantry Training Centre, Catterick.

After completing the Combat Infantry Course in 2010, Walker returned to 23 SAS(R) to undertake the United Kingdom Special Forces Selection process. Walker completed the six-month Hills (Aptitude) Phase of SAS(R) Selection in 2011. Walker took a year sabbatical after the Aptitude Phase to complete a Master of Science in Nuclear Physics, after which he returned to complete the Continuation Phase of the Special Forces Selection process with the United Kingdom Special Forces (Reserve) UKSF(R) in 2013, receiving his Beige Beret.

Walker served with UKSF(R) until 2015, serving last with 63 (SAS) Signal Squadron (Reserve), part of the 18 (UKSF) Signal Regiment.

Writing Career

During his military service, Walker wrote two fiction novels. His first novel, Above Instinct, was published in 2022 by Archway Publishing.[1]


As a physicist and engineer, Walker has served in various capacities:

  • Chartered Engineer- Institution of Mechanical Engineers
  • Professional Engineer- Engineers and Geoscientists BC
  • Chartered Physicist- Institute of Physics
  • Project Manager- Association for Project Management
  • Accounting Technician- Association of Accounting Technicians

Personal life

Walker is the oldest of five children. He is a British citizen and a Canadian Permanent Resident, currently residing in Vancouver, Canada.

Walker was a member of Mensa International.

In the media


  1. "Above Instinct". ArchwayPublishing. Retrieved 17 May 2022.