5 November 1966|
|Alma mater||University of Plymouth|
|Occupation||TV presenter, underwater diver|
|Television||Monty Halls' Great Escape, Animal Planet, Perfect Weapon|
Monty Halls (born 5 November 1966, England) is a TV broadcaster, explorer and marine biologist. He is most well known for his BBC Great Escape series (Monty Halls' Great Escape, Monty Halls' Great Hebridean Escape and Monty Halls' Great Irish Escape) in which he lived and worked in remote parts of the UK and Ireland with his dog-and-best-friend Reuben. Halls' other TV programmes include Great Ocean Adventures, Scubazoo, Animal Planet and Perfect Weapon. He has also led a number of diving expeditions. He was an expedition leader for the marine conservation charity Coral Cay Conservation.
Background and career
Halls attended Bedstone College, where he was head boy, after which he was commissioned as a Royal Marines officer. His time in the Marines included a period in the British Military Assistance and Training Team in South Africa, where he assisted with the integration of former ANC guerrillas into the South African Army.
At 29, having left the Marines, Halls studied Marine Biology at the University of Plymouth where he became involved with projects including the underwater filming of a rare species of crocodile in Belize in partnership with the Natural History Museum. He graduated with a First Class Honours degree in 1999. In 2002, Halls led a group of adventurers and scientists (from the Scientific Exploration Society) to the sunken city of Mahabalipuram off Tamil Nadu (India), researched by Graham Hancock, and discovered 6 temples, which are still being explored.
In 2005, he presented a nine-part TV series called Great Ocean Adventures (co-produced by RDF Television and Channel Five). A second series was broadcast in 2007. Memorable moments include Halls diving among a large number of Giant Humboldt Squid. In 2008 he co-hosted a National Geographic series, Perfect Weapon, looking at aspects of medieval weaponry. In 2008, Halls left his home in Bristol for Applecross on the west coast of Scotland for the first of the three BBC 'Great Escape' series, Monty Halls' Great Escape, where he tried to recreate the life of crofters for 6 months. In 2009 Halls then left for the Outer Hebrides to live and work as a nature warden on North Uist for six months. 2010 saw Monty live for six months in Connemara working with Irish Whale & Dolphin Conservation Group (IWDG). All of these series featured his dog Reuben.
With his background as a marine Halls was deeply moved when his close friend and best man, Major Jason Ward RM was killed in a helicopter crash on 21 March 2003, the second day of the Iraq War (Operation Telic). Halls supports military charities, in particular he is a patron of Help for Heroes, a charity committed to improving the facilities for injured servicemen and women. As a marine biologist he supports charities associated with the marine environment, and is also a patron of Shark Trust.
Monty Halls has written a number of books about diving, and writes a regular column for Dive Magazine in the UK.
In 2003, Halls was awarded the Bish Medal by the "Scientific Exploration Society" for his services to exploration. In December 2010, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science Degree by Plymouth University.
Halls lives in Devon, England with his wife Tamsyn Smith and their daughter Isla Grace.
- Contestant and winner of Superhuman (2004) on Channel 4
- Great Ocean Adventures (Season 1, nine episodes in 2005)
- Great Ocean Adventures (Season 2, eight episodes 2007)
- Perfect Weapon (Six episodes in 2008)
- Monty Halls' Great Escape (BBC Two, from 1 March 2009; broadcast as Beachcomber Cottage in Australia and New Zealand)
- Monty Halls' Great Hebridean Escape (BBC Two, from 21 April 2010; broadcast as Monty Halls' Island Escape in Australia from 28 December 2012)
- Monty Halls' Great Irish Escape (BBC Two, from 11 August 2011)
- Great Barrier Reef (BBC Two, 1–22 January 2012, 3 episodes)
- The Fisherman's Apprentice (BBC Two, from 29 February 2012, 6 episodes)
- "Coral Cay Conversation". Retrieved 7 December 2014.
- "Bedstone". Retrieved 7 December 2014.
- "Monty Halls – Great Ocean Adventures". University of Plymouth. Retrieved 25 November 2013.
- "In the footsteps of Monty Halls on North Uist". VisitBritain. 25 January 2012. Retrieved 9 December 2014.
- "Major Jason Ward RM". UK Ministry of Defence / National Archives. March 2003. Retrieved 9 December 2014.
- "Family hail 'truly amazing' marine". BBC. 28 March 2003. Retrieved 7 December 2014.
- "Shark Trust Patrons". Retrieved 7 December 2014.
- Parsons, Rob (4 January 2012). "TV wildlife star: I'll cut globe-trotting for my baby's sake". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 25 November 2013.
- "Superhuman". Channel 4 / The Wayback Machine. 2004. Archived from the original on 19 February 2005. Retrieved 9 December 2014.
- "Perfect Weapon". National Geographic. Retrieved 7 December 2014.
- Monty Halls' website
- Monty Halls at The Underwater TV Channel
- Help for Heroes
- Shark Trust
- Talking about his 2013 series Mysteries of the Deep