Frank Gardner OBE


Following successful military and  banking  careers, Frank joined the BBC World Service in 1995 as a producer and reporter, before becoming the BBC’s Gulf Correspondent two years later. In 1999 Frank became BBC Middle East Correspondent

In 2002, following world events and speaking fluent Arabic, Frank became the BBC’s the Security Correspondent, reporting from the frontlines on major world events. Frank has covered stories from recruits learning to defuse bombs in Afghanistan, to embedding with merchant sailors investigating piracy off the Somali coast. He’s also taken on two Arctic challenges. 

On 6 June 2004, while reporting from a suburb of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Gardner was shot six times and seriously injured in an attack by al-Qaeda sympathisers. His colleague Irish cameraman Simon Cumbers was shot dead. He was left partly paralysed in the legs and dependent on a wheelchair for life.

After 14 operations, 7 months in hospital and months of rehabilitation he returned to reporting for the BBC in mid-2005, using a wheelchair or a frame. The same year he was awarded an OBE by the Queen for his services to journalism. 

As a BBC correspondent, Frank has an audience of millions. In 2018 he used this influence to highlight the difficulties many disabled travellers face, when he reported live from a plane he was stuck on because his wheelchair had been sent to the wrong place. When the same thing occurred within six months, Frank was able again to draw much-needed attention to the poor provision for disabled people navigating airports, in a bid to help others experiencing similar situations.

In addition to his reporting, Frank is the author of a number of bestselling books, amongst them the memoir Blood and Sand describing his Middle East experiences, Far Horizons describing unusual journeys to unusual places, and his fiction debut Crisis, a spy thriller set in Colombia which was followed by Ultimatum, the second in the series.