A FORMER Royal Marines Commando turned taxi driver has set his sights on becoming an established television documentary maker.

Matt Jones graduated from Edinburgh Napier University last week with a first class BA (Honours) degree in television.

The 51-year-old, whose nephew is Scotland rugby star Huw Jones, has driven a taxi for nine years to pay his way through university and has built his own film studio and edit suite at his home in Longniddry.

The dad-of-three said: “The TV course has been a brilliant journey.

“Colleagues often ask where I find my energy, and sometimes I have to ask myself the same thing, especially at 4am when I have forgotten to go to bed. Perhaps my endurance and resilience comes from my 12 years as a commando.

“There have been sacrifices, the biggest of them being to have had no social life throughout this time, but I am passionate about television and I am now talking to production companies and hoping to make my mark in the documentary genre.”

While Matt admits it was “easy to feel envious of weekend revellers partying”, he said driving taxis allowed him to refine his interview skills for his TV career ahead.

And among those to grace the back seat of his cab over the last nine years have been the likes of Angus Deayton, Ian Lavender, Paul Merton, Alexei Sayle, Ruth Madoc and Steven Berkoff.

Matt, who served with the Royal Marines in Northern Ireland, has already completed a music production with National Museums Scotland for a new exhibition on Scottish pop from the 1950s to present day. The classical music enthusiast and trumpeter has also worked on a documentary about Felix Mendelssohn and is currently working on one on Fryderyk Chopin.

Now, following his graduation, he can’t wait to get his documentary career under way in earnest.

He said: “Whilst studying I have been coached and trained by lecturers who are well-known in the industry and it has been wonderful to benefit from their experience.

“I am now in the process of sitting down with production companies, and looking forward to establishing my own name as a documentary maker.”

Dr Kirsten MacLeod, course programme leader, said: “Matt has been an enthusiastic and committed student who has really made the most of his time.”