Giles Shingler was born in the State of Victoria, Australia in late October 1972 to British parents. The parental family returned to Britain 8 months later giving him British citizenship via the Robertson Act of Parliament. His parents were asked to disavow all entitlements of protection from Australian law on his behalf. He first lived in Britain in Thornbury, where he met the Halls, including Melanie Hall who was later murdered. At the age of 4 and a half he moved to Devon. Whilst living in and on leaving Devon to live at the farm and watermill of his grandparents with his parents he made a couple of big BBC appearances. He appeared on the Paul Hogan Show in the Bicycle Song sketch and interviewed Jonny Rotten for BBC radio on the subject of Jimmy Savile.
He made good progress at school and was awarded a John Edmunds bursary to Hazlegrove House then a Full Scholarship to King's School, Bruton (which annoyed the local doctor as his son missed out). He got excellent GCSEs, A and S levels before taking a gap year to work abroad and on the family farm rebuilding the wall of the mill pool. After changing academic subject between school and uni, and ticked-off about receiving no scholarship or bursaries at uni he excelled in First year, gaining a First in Economics and a 2/1 in Philosophy and also studied Politics. Facing public hatred of politicians he turned instead to recording music (much of which is still available free on his website). It was tricky gaining friends after taking a gap year and perhaps he was forced to be too generous in his conviviality. Notable events at university include being tattooed on the face by Duncan Stuart Hamilton when he was asleep, dating Joanna Chatfield a nursing student from Oxford Brookes, Chandrika Nath a graduate student from Linacre College and going to local dances. In the holidays he worked for Montgomery's of North and South Cadbury on a forage harvester, Vale of Camelot Growers where he planted Raspberries and strawberries and picked tomatoes and also a daffodil bulb farm in Cornwall.
He was unhappy with his finals and was allowed no viva voce, appeal or resits, but was eventually admitted to an honorary degree and an MA. He did voluntary work in an old people's home in Headington in a second gap-year and met many interesting characters, including a notable ex-RAF Commander who painted in his retirement, descendants of the painter Hogarth and the retired Moscow correspondent of the Times. He served dinner for the cousin of the queen, a sister in law of one of the residents. His royal connections include his grandmother's aunt who was a cook at Windsor Castle. His mother's family also have a stained glass window in the House of Lords called the Scales window.
During finals he wrote of the importance of volunteering to look for missing people, and this had become close to his heart as his childhood friend had left a nightclub with Michael Clarke and never been seen again. He told his friends of his concerns, but was undermined by his poor degree results of the time and his friends all but left him. In this terrible time he was admitted to Green Lane Hospital in Devizes where he shared his concerns for Mel, but the staff were reluctant to hear him and also he felt he was in danger due to being in the room next to Michael Clarke's brother, Gary. He told his solicitor that he should be released due to the death of his wife - He and Mel had talked of marrying and Mel often came to visit the farm and mill in the summer months until their late teens, and signed documents to the fact, but these were destroyed by his solicitor. He was obliged to start a course of female hormone as part of an orthomolecular medicine supervision and treatment order. He reluctantly agreed and they helped him to sleep and due to sensitivities over the destroyed documents he was given Disability Benefit rather than Income Support.
He stayed on DB for 6 months then got a job at a builder's merchant where he learnt much about computers and helped install Point of Sale equipment. Here he met Oxford Lawyer Mark Watson, who showed him the ropes. It took a great amount of driving and long working days and when the miles were increasing he decided to leave a few months early and got a job at a dairy, as his school work had often concerned the design of dairy machinery. The locals were often a rough lot and did not like cheese, so it was hard to implement the changes to the existing set up that his school grades suggested would be worthwhile.
During these years after returning home from Oxford he helped his parents build an ornamental garden with some building materials which he purchased from work.
He was given redundancy after 13 years at the dairy and found work at Wyke Farms some few months later, again using machinery which he had been helping design whilst at school.
Whilst at school he loved designing as part of the Maths for Industry project. His achievements included a shell design for the mini disc player and recorder which allowed an array of designs to flow from it, easy-fastening, inexpensive vegetarian shoes, the harmoniser and timing data for the Yamaha QY series of music sequencers, product spec for healthspan.co.uk, cordless clippers with a titanium blade, an economic tool for orthodontics in developing countries as well as the dairy machinery.