I'm James Dyson, I'm the owner and operator of Present Past. I've always had a fascination for history and archaeology, but for me it always came down to the story. The story of how people lived, how different and similar they were at different times and cultures. This interest has ever been a significant pastime for myself and others around me. Over many years this has led me to take part in various living history and re-enactment events with a variety of groups and represented time periods. While I have interest in myriad eras and cultures, from stone age man, through Roman military history and early 'fertile crescent' civilisation, it is the so called 'Dark Ages' that have been at the centre of my historical exploits. My growing interest allowed me to combine my love of using my hands to craft and my love of history.
It has always been my love of sharing the story that matched my natural skill set. However it was not the story of human history that I went on to study, but natural history. My academic background is actually in Evolutionary Biology, or the story of life on planet Earth. With that I often worked for various organisations in science communication, sharing my passion with adults and children from around the UK. I even embarked on a career path in primary school teaching before I came to my senses. It was in the interim time period after leaving teacher training before my current career path that I embarked on turning my passion for the story into a business pastime. Since then I have thoroughly enjoyed the process of establishing myself and constantly refining the products I can offer. It is once again, for the love of passing on the story that I continue to run Present Past. This love of teaching and telling the story, organically led to me being offered work in living history and so far I have taken my living history demonstrations to schools and historical sites across Scotland.
Now as the old idiom goes, "never work with children or animals", thus I am now a zookeeper. I am lucky enough to work with a wide variety of small and medium exotic animals from reptiles and amphibians to mammals and invertebrates. Though I am lucky enough to largely work with one of the more unusual animals at the Zoo that requires a lot of time and effort. I am of course referring to our visitors. Through our extensive talks programme and animals handling sessions I am given the opportunity to yet again share my passion of history on Earth. The end being to spread the word about what I believe the modern Zoo is all about; to 'educate and inspire'. This is an adage I personally aspire to both at the Zoo and in my craft.
As has been established, Present Past is run solely as an outlet for the enjoyment of my craft and the sharing of it with others. Because of this you can rely on the fact that everything I do is done to the highest possible standard and with a true love of sharing a unique piece of history with you, the customer.