After graduating in economics at University College, London, Paul took up Japanese graduate studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies, also in London. He first travelled to Japan in 1987 to continue his language studies while on a home stay in Kawagoe, just outside of Tokyo. Here he firmly became a part of the family who took him in, he attributes his feeling very comfortable in all things Japanese to these early days. Paul still has a strong connection to his family in Kawagoe and considers the city his home in Japan.
Paul finished his formal studies in 1989 and subsequently lived between Tokyo and London until 2002, when he moved back permanently to Japan setting up home in Oita Prefecture in Kyushu.
Paul’s varied career includes working as an analyst for Japan’s principal business newspaper, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun, as the managing director of the Japanese subsidiary of a British 500 FTSE company and as a freelance producer and director for Japanese television.
In 2002, a long-held yearning for rural life led him to a quiet village on the Kunisaki Peninsula in Kyushu, where he is raising his family of four sons and leading Walk Japan's Community Project. Paul was officially recognised as a farmer by the Japanese authorities in 2015 and has since expanded the arable land under his care 10-fold.
In recognition of his work with Walk Japan and the Community Project, Paul was made a Cool Japan Ambassador in 2016. He was also made an All Nippon Airways Ambassador and Onsen Gastronomy Ambassador in 2017. Other posts he holds includes advisor at the Asia Pacific University in Beppu, and at Taketa and Kitsuki Cities in Oita Prefecture.
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