All Photos ©2007 Steve Piper and Tristen Millen.
Neil was born a country lad, in his mother's bedroom amidst the green hills of Highstead Valley in Kent. Not such a bouncing baby Neil spent some time in hospital at just 6 months with heart murmours and "something else serious" he can't remember. Surviving, he attended the tiny Milstead Primary School (total 30 students in 2 classes in the entire school) where he remembers little besides the climbing frame;
Moving on to secondary school he showed early signs of his love of food of any description, passing out with excitement in the dinner queue on his first day. He became friends with Jon Driscoll and Dave Smith on a sixth form golf trip to Barcelona, and also played football with Driscoll, at various points winning player of the year and manager's player awards;
Driscoll, however, added an alternative view;
Enjoying the freedom of later teenage years (i.e. sex, alcohol, cars, and the subverting minds of Driscoll and Smith amongst others) Neil moved out of his computer games hermit mode and began to hang out with the boys in downtown Sittingbourne. For a while, he and occasional Coffee contributor Lee Nightingale had a book going on their 'acheivements' with the opposite sex, unfortunately the all girls' grammar school heard about it and blacklisted the pair. Neil met Steve Piper and Ben Seaman around the same time, and spent all of Euro '96 huddled in the 'Pit' (the underside of Piper's piano, bedecked with Gazza posters), cheering on the England team, until the point at which we all realised it was going to be several more years of hurt and...Well, it was emotional for all of us.
Over the years Neil has also enjoyed a variety of occupations; enduring the "typical Saturday job mundane shit" before seeking out something slightly more career oriented, based on the fact he enjoyed fitness he decided to join the Fire Brigade.
Getting into the brigade turned out harder than expected, through sheer weight of numbers; he applied for Kent brigade but was turned down, couldn't get through on the telephone the first time London advertised, then after two hours of dialling got through to London the second time they advertised, along with 10,000 other hopefuls; the rest, as they say, is history.
The brigade provided a variety of draws; the fitness element, the risk factor, the variation, and the outside possibility of rescuing a beautiful damsel in distress from a towering inferno of doom. The last few years have been Neil's favourites to date; a good job, a nice car, bought his first house, mountain led the Coffee crew around Scotland and had plenty of holidays including Amsterdam twice, Andora, Magaluf twice, Singapore, Italy, Greece, Dublin, Majorca, and a month in Australia; most recently he has become the proud father of a beautiful American Staff called Betsy (pictured above), who has been keeping the Jordan household busy and awake, and provoking numerous Mexican stand offs with company mascot Coffee on visits to head office!
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