About me

Hello, I’m Sunil Patel, welcome to my personal site. I’ve studied physics for too long, love gardening, have a tendency to bake in winter and have a soft spot for cats – even though I don’t have any.

Professional History

You can see my LinkedIn profile, detailing my professional skills and more here:


If you would like to get in touch with me directly regarding opportunities, you can reach me via LinkedIn InMail or you can fill and send this contact form.

Academic History

Originally from Leeds, I went south to study physics at Imperial College, London (1999-2003) and emerged with a 2.1 degree. The MSci+YiE course involved spending my third year at a European University on an ERASMUS Student Exchange programme.

So in 2002 I headed to Italy, to the Università degli studi di Trento in Trentino Alto-Adige (or Süd Tirol; it depends who you ask). This was in the north east Italian Alps, a region of stunning natural beauty and abundant geography. It was certainly an eye-opener, I learned how to cook, became fluent in Italian and developed my love for swimming and hill/mountain walking there.

It was also in Italy, at the University where I met my future PhD supervisor, Dr. Tim Freegarde. After finishing my fourth year back at Imperial, I accepted a PhD post at the University of Southampton to study the “Optical Manipulation of Atoms and Molecules using Coherent Techniques” under the supervision of Dr. Freegarde.

At Southampton, I became heavily involved in undergraduate demonstrating, Schools Outreach educational programmes and communication of Science projects through activities such as Holography Workshops and the Light Express Roadshow. I also found my creative side and did many design, web and print projects.

I completed and submitted my thesis in the summer of 2008 and you will find my thesis on this site as well as the LaTeX Thesis Template that I based it on and made available separately for you to use if you come to write your thesis.

My Book

My second publication (after my PhD Thesis) is an iBook titled, “A Year in a Small Garden“, learn more about this book, preview and get it here.

My Garden

I have a passion for gardening that came from my grandfather (it skipped a generation) and spend the long summer days toiling away outside in the garden in the vain hope that someday I will finish all the work that needs to be done and will finally be able to sit down on the patio and simply enjoy it.

My ultimate aim for the garden is for it to be filled with throngs of visitors, enjoying tea and cakes on the patio and walking in the garden on a balmy summer afternoon, all while raising money for charity as part of the National Gardens Scheme.

The garden is still some years away from this but with each new border created, this dream inexorably creeps closer to reality and it’s all chronicled here on this blog.