Sunday, 12 February 2012

John Hoskison - Inside Prison

John Hoskison's acclaimed book 'Inside - One Man's Experience of Prison' is now available as an ebook.  The book has received over 1000 4.5 top reviews on Itunes.

This book is a highly emotional story about forgiveness and the strength to face adversity.  The book is regarded as one of the most accurate portrayals of prisons ever written by authorities dealing with gaols in Britain.

Top professional golfer John Hoskison swaps the safety of Surrey golf courses for danger and fear in some of the toughest prisons in the country. 

A journey to hell and back.  Entertaining, and 100 times more scary than any drink/drive campaign.  
FHM Magazine

This is a must read book.  Not just an insight into how prison really is but a real life story that illustrates just how quickly your life can turn upside down 'There but for the grace of God' 
John Francome Best Selling Author and Champion Jockey

Ought to be compulsory reading for all Home Office ministers
Allan Massie - Daily Telegraph

This brave and important book should be read by all those who have anything to do with the treatment and condition of those committed to our prisons.   The book should be made required reading for all those serving in the prison service and those who join in the future.
Lord Ramsbotham – Chief Inspector of Prisons 1995 - 2001

The book is now available from Amazon and itunes.
(click on the picture to go to Amazon and read a preview)

John has also written a bestselling fiction novel based on his experiences of prison.  The book is called Name and Number.

From Prizes to Prison
(A brief autobiography)

For twenty years John was a highly respected and successful golfer.  He represented Europe in PGA Cup Matches against the USA and made a living competing against some of the best golfers in the world.  These included Ian Woosnam,  Nick Faldo and Sandy Lyle who was the captain of the the England boys team John represented when a pupil at St John’s School in Leatherhead. 

In 1994 after playing in golf match John inexplicably broke a discipline he had maintained for 20 years and accepted a drink after a golf match before driving home.  On the short journey he hit and killed a cyclist.

‘When I look back, it was my inability to say ’no’ that led me to have that drink’ says Hoskison.  ‘Irrespective of the circumstances, whether it be drink, drugs or simply speeding in a car, the consequences of being unable to say ’no’ and not following your conscience can be tragic and devastating’.   John received a three year prison sentence. 

Speaking at Schools

Since leaving prison John has spoken at over 250 of the top schools in the country (testimonials below).  During the last twelve months he has spoken at  Eton, Wellington, Marlborough, Magdalen College, Charterhouse, Royal Gulidford Grammar, Notting Hill and Ealing High, d'Overbroeks, Kingswood, Tettenhall, Leicester Grammar, Loughborough, Trent, Kent College, Lord Wandsworth, Colston's, South Hampstead High and many others. 

In a story that has many profound messages John explains how he was able to look positively towards his future in prison because of the incredible Christian like forgiveness he was shown by the widow of the man he had killed, who even asked for leniency to be shown at his sentencing trial.  

‘Without being forgiven it would have been hard for me to carry on, but once being shown a way forward I looked towards my sentence as positively as I could. Somehow I had to find a way to look after my wife and son’.
The time John spent in prison clearly demonstrates that not everything in the press should be believed.  Often portrayed as a holiday camp Hoskison shows that prison is a hostile and often violent place to be avoided at all costs.
With help from other inmates Hoskison survived and wrote a book highlighting some of the worst things about the prison system.  When the book was published Sir David Ramsbotham, the then Chief Inspector of Prisons suggested it should be required reading by all those connected to the prison service as it offered a true insight into the realities of the prison.

The talk John delivers covers many important subjects, initially outlining the skills required to reach the top in any profession, including the importance of hard work, dedication and crucially good preparation.  But then the talk takes a devastating twist as John recounts how he made a mistake one day that had tragic and devastating consequences.  The talk makes the pupils realise how they are responsible for their own actions and how important it is to be able to say 'no' when needed.

The talk ends on a positive note.  After years of trying to make amends for what happened John was welcomed back into the PGA and with everyone's support he went on to earn his playing priviledges on the European Seniors Tour.   Apart from occasionally competing on the course John runs the junior section at Newbury Golf Centre and is the feature writer for the international magazine Suite101.


My students, colleagues and I were moved beyond expectation by what John had to say.  His advice and inspiration on how to reach the top of any profession, the importance of hard work and determination and not giving up when things are not going your way were hugely valuable. John’s talk was meaningful, emotional and very powerful – I recommend him as one of the most valuable speakers that we have welcomed to our school.

Kate Dodd - Head of Sixth Form - Badminton School

John Hoskison delivers a powerful and moving message with passion and personal humility.   In the context of "life lessons" learned though the experience of professional sport he addresses key issues such as the necessity of good preparation, of "knowing the rules" and the importance of confidence and communication skills.  It was an extremely useful talk and we have already booked him for next year.

Kate Cayley – Head of Boarding - Marlborough College

John, thank you so much for your inspirational presentation to students and staff today.  As I hope you detected we were all entranced with your story and the manner and style of your delivery made your messages accessible and captivating.

I thank you on behalf of the students who have had a remarkable experience listening to something that was both memorable and deeply inspirational.  In taking time to tell us your story you have given us a unique opportunity to learn.  I am sure it will be life changing for some – if not many.

Ian MacKinnon - Headmaster  - Bristol Grammar

John’s visit to address our Year 12 students was a terrific success.  His background as a successful professional sportsman gives him the opportunity to motivate and prepare young people for the challenges that lie ahead, particularly with regards to dedication and hard work. The boys were both intrigued by the story of his life and inspired by his achievements.  

Stuart Miles - Deputy Headmaster - John Lyon School

John’s story told to over 400 sixth form pupils was delivered in an engaging, genuine and thought provoking style.  It is so relevant and appropriate for our youngsters to listen to. His talk will touch everyone and make them think long after he has left. You will not regret inviting him to address your sixth formers.

Dr A. R. John's- Head of Sixth Form - Bromsgrove School

John spoke superbly for 40 minutes to a rapt audience.  His story made a considerable impact: I have not stopped receiving comments from students in the days since. 
As one of his key messages is that preparation is always the key to success, it is no surprise that every detail of his performance is well honed. I would have no reservations at all in recommending John as a speaker and look forward to him returning to our school.

Tim Borton - Head of Sixth Form - Bishop's Stortford School

I would like to thank you for the inspiring and informative talk that you provided to our Sixth Form students. The talk clearly underlined some of the qualities required for success in achieving your life goals. It also provided a fascinating and wonderful example of how we can all turn our lives around if needed.

Tim Hoyle - Deputy Head Pastoral -  Warwick School 
'I just wanted to say a massive thank you for sharing your inspiring life experiences with us.  I am a competitive event rider and hearing you talk about your dedication to your sport and the hard work it has taken for you to succeed as a professional golfer has given me the confidence and incentive to keep working towards competing at the next level. 

Your strength, determination and modesty can only be described as incredibly inspiring so thank you so much for your time'.

Sixth Form Pupil at Badminton Girls School

'Mr Hoskison's lecture 'My Life' was enlightening and inspiring. Several of our sixth form students have already asked me if John could return to Colfe's again before the end of the academic year. This is praise indeed and highlights John's ability to engage a large group of young people and hold their attention.
Thank you so much for sharing your philosophy and story with us. I look forward to seeing you again next academic year.

 Craig Foxall – Colfe’s School - Head of Sixth Form Enlightenment

John came to talk to 60 of our Lower Sixth form students. He has a clear and informative style of speaking and certainly has a strong message to get across. He spoke about his career in golf and how many of the skills needed as a professional sportsman are also applicable to the world of an A level student: determination, taking yourself out of the comfort zone at times and working hard to achieve your goals and aspirations.

John made his own life experiences very relevant to the students and I know they had a profound effect on the students at my College.  It was a wonderful talk.

Kate Palmer - Enrichment Co-ordinator, d'Overbroeck's College, Oxford

If you are interested in asking John to your school please contact him directly on