Spy chiefs nearly employed a blind James Bond… before realising he couldn’t identify the enemy quick enough.
Stand-up comic Chris McCausland has revealed he got through to the final 30 out of 3,000 wannabe 007s.
The 45-year-old, now totally blind after suffering gradual sight loss over 20 years due to the genetic disorder retinitis pigmentosa, said he only applied for a “laugh.”
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He said: “My degree is in software engineering and as my eyesight (went)… I needed to find something else to do.
“And I applied for loads of stuff, and I applied for Mi5.
“They have a graduate scheme believe it or not, and I went through the various processes.
“I had no ambition of being a spy and I did it for a laugh really, and I thought, ‘Why not?’
“There were 3,000 applicants, and before I knew it, I was down to the final 30 – before they came to their senses and thought, ‘We do not need a blind spy!
“Discrimination is often seen as a very bad word, but sometimes it’s necessary for the safety of the nation.”
After passing vigorous checks and interviews, the funnyman said he finally came a cropper during a threat detection task.
Chris – who is currently starring in Channel 4’s Scared Of The Dark reality show – added: “I had an interview – I went through the whole thing.
“You have to do a full day assessment where I was given like an inbox, where you have to identify the immediate threat.
“And I had a meeting with the surveillance team to do surveillance on a target.
“The inbox (task) took too long – that was why they didn’t give it to me. My eyesight meant it took too long.
“And I got the point – if something blows up you can’t come on the news and go, ‘Sorry, the fella we had working on this is blind, and it takes him too long.’
Despite Chris not getting through, Britain’s spy chief at Mi6 recently revealed that he wanted disabled people to join the outfit.
Richard Moore said his wife, who is blind and helped establish the Turkish Guide Dogs Association, was an “inspiration” behind his idea.
He tweeted: “Married as I am to an inspiring blind woman, I feel particularly strongly about making #SIS #MI6 a better place for disabled people.”
Scared of the Dark airs Sunday, April 16 to Thursday, April 20 on Channel 4 at 9pm
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