Former Bolton School pupil becomes ambassador to Vietnam
BOLTON School old boy Giles Lever will soon be “our man in Hanoi” as he prepares to become the British ambassador to Vietnam.
The 45-year-old will take up the prestigious appointment in July at a time when the Asian country is developing fast on the international stage.
Mr Lever is the latest member of the Lever family in Bolton to rise to the top in his career.
His father, Michael Lever, was a leading Crown Court Judge, who sat at Bolton, and his brother is author James Lever who was a 2009 Booker Prize Nominee for the critically acclaimed fictional autobiography Me Cheeta.
The married father-of-two, who grew up in Rivington, said: “I’m delighted and honoured to be returning to Vietnam, the country where I started my diplomatic career.
“It will be a great privilege to play a role in further advancing Britain’s relations with one of Asia’s most dynamic emerging powers, on the basis of the UK-Vietnam Strategic Partnership Agreement.”
Mr Lever read classics at Bristol University after leaving Bolton School and was all set to follow his father into the legal profession, but decided to aim for a career which would foster his love of travelling.
In 1990 he joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, joining the Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia team, south east Asia department, before going to take up the position of second secretary (political) in Hanoi in 1993 until 1997.
He has also held positions in Iraq and several African countries.
In Iraq he helped in the successful extradition of a man wanted in Britain for the murder of a family relative, while in Nigeria he had the opportunity to take part in the Obudu Ranch International Mountain Race, an annual 11.25km mountain running competition.
Mr Lever said: “There are huge potential benefits to both countries from broader and deeper co-operation on arrange of issues, from trade and investment to education.
“I also look forward to the challenge of bringing my Vietnamese back up to the level demanded by this exciting agenda.”