Obituaries - H

Obituaries - H

Anders H. Hald

Anders Hjorth Hald, one of Denmark’s most distinguished statisticians, died on 11 November 2007. In 2001, he had become one of the first group of eminent foreign scholars elected to our new category of Corresponding Fellows. Unfortunately, he never had any subsequent opportunity to visit Edinburgh and so to develop his intended role as an academic link between Denmark and Scotland. Read more about Anders Hald

Arthur James (Hamish) Hale

Hamish Hale was born in Largs, Ayrshire in 1926, the second son of Helen, and Victor - a colourful character who had served in the Royal Flying Corps and as an administrator on the Gold Coast. His parents ran the Victoria Hotel, which was a hotbed of intellectual activity in the 1930s and 40s, attracting a varied cast of writers, priests and politicians, including Jimmie Maxton, the leader of the Independent Labour Party, considered to be one of the greatest orators of his time. Learn more about Hamish Hale

John Hawthorn

John Hawthorn was born in Glasgow on 30 March 1921, and died, while on holiday at Portpatrick, on 21 July 1993. He was educated at Shawlands Academy and at Glasgow High School , then worked for two years as an apprentice engineer with J & J Weir Ltd, Cathcart. In 1939 he enrolled at the Royal Technical College, Glasgow, and at the University of Glasgow for their joint degree in Engineering. However, he showed such an aptitude for chemistry, which was a subsidiary part of the course, that he accepted the advice of his lecturer, the late Emeritus Professor John MacLean, and transferred to Chemistry, graduating with First Class Honours in 1943. Read more about John Hawthorn

Denys Hay

Nine a.m. on a January morning in 1946, not a promising time for new visions, but the European History class at Edinburgh University knew that this class would never be the same again. The new lecturer, freshly demobbed from the place on the ‘war history’ team to which he had been transferred from the RASC in 1942, was a master of synthesis, of the broad view, of the common social and political ideas which governed the evolution of diverse European states, and which, with the course in his hands, replaced the treaty-catalogue to which an older generation was addicted. He would confess that for parts of the course he was only a chapter ahead of the students, but in truth that book did not exist for him or us, the detail drawn and the insights arising from the wide reading which was his principal joy outside his family. Read more about Denys Hay

William Hayes

Bill Hayes came to Edinburgh in 1968 when he moved his MRC Microbial Genetics from Hammersmith Hospital to the newly formed Department of Molecular Biology which he and Martin Pollock had established together. He was delightful to know, a charming and always courteous colleague, an outstanding scholar and teacher, and his discovery of the sex factor in the bacterium Escherichia coli had established him as one of the great pioneers of modern molecular genetics. Professor William Hayes was born on 18 January 1913 at Rathfarnham, Co Dublin, the only son of William Hayes, a very successful Dublin Pharmacist, and his second wife, Miriam, née Harris. The young William was still a child when his father died and he lived with his mother and grandmother and was educated at home by a governess, before going to a preparatory school in Dalkey and then to St Columba's College at Rathfarnham, where his early interest in science began to develop through an experimental hobby in electronics, rather than in the classroom. Read more about William Hayes

Peter Joseph Heald

Peter Heald was appointed Professor of Biochemistry in the University of Strathclyde in 1966, his appointment more or less coinciding with my own as Professor of Biology. Although both disciplines had been well-nurtured under the umbrella of Professor Ernest Morris of Applied Microbiology, we were both heading newly-created Departments and as such had a considerable amount of what was somewhat cruelly, but quite accurately, termed ‘empire-building’ to do. In time we came to share the newly built ‘Todd Centre’. Peter was a ‘bonny fechter’, a top-class scientist, a penetrating mind and a superb administrator. We had many constructive animated meetings together; some of them were heated but Peter was never a man to hold a grudge. ‘Issues are what matter’ was his favourite phrase. I had enormous respect for his abilities. Read more about Peter Joseph Heald

Henry Heaney

Henry Heaney was the University Librarian and Keeper of the Hunterian Books and Manuscripts at the University of Glasgow for twenty years until his retirement in September 1998. He was born in Newry, Northern Ireland, and after secondary school went to Queen's University Belfast. In 1957 he graduated with a BA in Modern History, and in 1970 took an MA with a thesis on prison reform, a subject which remained dear to his heart. Read more about Henry Heaney

James Ferguson Heggie

James Ferguson Heggie was born on 9th September 1907 in Renfrew where he spent his childhood. He attended Renfrew High School and subsequently Allan Glen’s School in Glasgow. His father was a victim of the pandemic of acute encephalitis of 1918-19 after which he was increasingly disabled by post-encephalitic Parkinsonism and died in 1930, leaving a widow and three children of whom James was the eldest. From the age of 16, James contributed to the family’s dwindling savings by taking on clerical and other work during vacations, weekends and evenings. In spite of this he won a scholarship to Glasgow University and matriculated in 1924 as a medical student. He had a brilliant undergraduate career, winning many class prizes including the Muir Medal in Pathology and in 1930 he graduated MB, ChB, with Honours and received the Brunton Memorial Prize awarded annually to the most distinguished of a class of approximately 150 graduating medical students.Read more about James Ferguson Heggie

Knut Helle

Knut Helle, who died in June, 2015, was Norway’s foremost medieval historian and was the most active editor and author of books on the medieval history of Norway in the past forty years. He wrote standard authoritative studies of the political, urban and legal history of the formative period when Norway was developing from a domain of Viking sea chieftains into a medieval state. One of his early books was entitled Norge Blir en Stat (‘Norway becomes a State’)(1965), a profoundly influential study of the kingdom from 1130 to 1319. In the latter year the direct line of male heirs to the kingdom died out, and  Norway entered a period of political uncertainty, subject to increasing influence from the neighbouring kingdoms of Denmark and Sweden which led eventually to the uniting of the three kingdoms under one dynasty, and the loss of Norway’s independence as a political entity. Helle’s main research focus was on the history of Norway prior to that loss of independence. Learn more about Knut Helle

Douglas Mackay Henderson

Douglas Mackay Henderson was born in Blairgowrie on 30 August 1927, the second son of Captain Frank Morrison Henderson and Adine Cornfute Mackay. His father, the son of a bank agent, began training as a banker in Trinity, Edinburgh before he ran away to sea. He became a Master Mariner and held a command for many years with the Ben Line, serving with the Merchant Navy during both World Wars. His mother was the daughter of Charles Gordon Mackay, for forty years medical practitioner in Lochcarron, and former associate of Joseph Lister. Douglas’ eldest brother, the late Frank Paterson, became a geologist and his younger brother Andrew Ernest, a zoologist. Douglas’ father was at sea for lengthy spells and died when in his fifties and the responsibility for rearing the family devolved therefore upon their able mother and Helen Watt (‘En’), her characterful maid from Buchan. Mrs Henderson awakened the boy’s love of Wester Ross and Highland culture, including his love for skating. ‘En’, for whom Douglas had great affection and esteem, led him to value and enjoy the worth of every individual. In later life, when he was privileged to mix with people of every social background, it was characteristic of him to shun humbug and judge everyone on their merits while treating each with equal respect. Read more about Douglas Mackay Henderson

Arnold William Hendry

Professor Arnold W. Hendry was one of the most eminent Structural Engineers of the 20th century – focusing latterly on Structural Masonry. His core skills were classical mathematical analysis, detailed and carefully executed laboratory tests and very large scale experiments in Torphin quarry – combined with a quick mind that enabled him to absorb a huge amount of detail and draw understandable and forward looking conclusions. This was combined with his ability to turn inspirational research into world leading publications – very rapidly. People queried – how did he do it!
Born in 1921, Arnold William Hendry was educated at Buckie High School in the North East of Scotland before attending Aberdeen University, from where he graduated BSc, PhD and DSc. After graduating BSc, Hendry worked for Sir William Arrol & Co, Glasgow (1941-43) – then he held appointments in 5 universities. Read more about Arnold Hendry

John Heslop-Harrison

Professor John (Jack) Heslop-Harrison died at his home in Leominster, Herefordshire on 7 May 1998. He was the youngest of three children born to John William Heslop-Harrison and Christian (née Henderson). Shortly after his birth on 10 February 1920, the family moved from Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, to Birtley in Co. Durham. He attended the public elementary school in this mining community and then received his secondary education at Chester-le-Street Secondary School. After winning an Open Entrance Scholarship to the University of Durham in 1938, he read Botany, Zoology and Chemistry at King’s College (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) graduating in 1941 with First Class Honours in Botany. Read more about John Heslop-Harrison

Alexander Reid Hill

Alex Hill was a popular Senior Lecturer in Agricultural Zoology at the University of Glasgow and, over his 36 years of teaching there, his students went all over the world to help the development of agriculture, especially in underdeveloped countries. Alex was born in Dundee on the 17th October, 1919 and died on the 21st October, 2006. With his passing, Scotland lost an influential teacher and an innovative researcher in agricultural zoology. Read more about Alex Hill

Graham John Hills

Professor Sir Graham Hills wanted to be remembered for three things. These were, establishing an international graduate school of electrochemistry at Southampton University in the 1970s, presiding over the emergence of Strathclyde University as the premier university of technology in Scotland in the 1980s, and playing a major role in the creation of the new University of the Highlands and Islands in the 1990s. Indeed he will be remembered for these and much more. Graham Hills was born in the fishing village of Leigh-on-Sea at the time of the General Strike. His formative years in the Great Depression left him indelibly marked by the injustices of unemployment and poverty. This and his Methodist upbringing ensured a Protestant work ethic to last a lifetime. Read more about Sir Graham Hills

Friedrich Hirzebruch

Friedrich Hirzebruch, universally known, like his father and paternal grandfather, as Fritz, was born in Hamm on 17th October, 1927. His grandfather had been a master saddler, an important position at a time when horses were the main form of transport. His father had mathematical talent and studied mathematics and natural sciences in Gottingen, Berlin and Munster before becoming a high school teacher in Minden. In due course he became the headmaster of a large secondary school in Hamm where he stayed for the remaining twenty years of his career. His wife, Martha (nee Holtschmit) came from a family that worked in the Westphalian metal industry. Martha and Fritz had four children. The eldest, Friedrich Ernst Peter was the future mathematician. The youngest Ulrich also became a professor of mathematics. Another son Ernst Otto went into business and eventually emigrated to South Africa. The one daughter, Renate, married the physicist Heinz Rottger and moved later to the Netherlands. The war years were inevitably difficult for the whole family. Hamm was a major railway centre and was being bombed as early as 1940. In 1944 major bombing raids destroyed much of the town including Fritz's school, and killed many of its citizens. The Hirzebruch family split up with Martha taking the younger children with her to join other relatives at Balve. It was not until August 1945 that the entire family returned to Hamm. Read more about Friedrich Hirzebruch This obituary is an abridged version of the biographical memoir prepared by Sir Michael Atiyah for the Royal Society.  Reproduced with permission of the Royal Society.

Derrick Ernest Hoare

Derrick Hoare, formerly a Reader in the Chemistry Department at the University of Dundee, died suddenly in 1998 while on holiday in Bavaria. Derrick was born on March 31 1926 and attended Portsmouth Grammar School before going up to Cambridge University to read for his MA degree. He was elected a Senior Scholar of Trinity College Cambridge in 1946 and took Part II Tripos in Chemistry in 1947. After a period of service as Education Officer in the Royal Air Force he joined Professor A D Walsh at the University of Leeds where he gained his PhD in 1951 after the minimum allowed time of two years, working on the combustion of methane. He completed his scientific training by then going to Rochester, New York, in order to study the photochemistry of gases under Professor W A Noyes Jr who was the recognised pioneer and authority on this subject. With Noyes he concentrated his efforts on researching the photooxidation of acetone. Read more about Derrick Ernest Hoare

Dorothy Mary Crowfoot Hodgkin

Dorothy Mary Crowfoot was born in Cairo in 1910. Her father was an archaeologist with a special interest in the Sudan, an interest shared by her mother, who had trained as a botanist. Dorothy married Thomas Hodgkin in 1937 and they had three children, Luke, Elizabeth and Toby. Somehow she succeeded in finding ample time for her family without neglecting her research or other interests - as one of her three recreations listed in Who's Who she gave 'children', the others being archaeology and walking. She died at her home in Ilmington in Warwickshire on 29 July 1994. Thomas died in 1982. Read more about Dorothy Mary Crowfoot Hodgkin

Richard Milne Hogg

Richard Milne Hogg was born on May 20 1944, and died suddenly on 6 September 2007 of a heart attack. Richard was born in Edinburgh and attended both school and University in the city, all of which, much later, meant that his election to a Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2004 was particularly special to him. Richard graduated with first class honours in English Language and Literature in 1967 and subsequently worked as a graduate student both on his doctorate on modern English syntax, and on Angus MacIntosh’s Middle English Dialect Project, now the Institute of Historical Dialectology. His first lectureship was in Amsterdam, and he then moved to Lancaster and then in 1980, at the age of 36, to the Smith Chair of English Language and Medieval Literature at the University of Manchester, where he remained, with brief excursions into faculty administration, as the University restructured itself around him. Read more about Richard Milne Hogg

Alan Vernon Holden

Alan Vernon Holden was born in Cambridge on 12 July, 1922 and died in Ninewells Hospital, Dundee on 1 August, 2011, aged 89.  With his passing, science in Scotland has lost one of the pioneers of freshwater chemistry in Europe, but his legacy lives on through his many publications. Learn more about Alan Veron Holden

Neil Hood

Neil Hood had a remarkable career, spanning both the academic and commercial sectors in a way that maximised the advantages to all parties. Neil was born in 1943 and left school at 18, initially going straight into the steel industry. From there he left to go to Glasgow University to read Regional Geography and Economic Development. On graduation in 1968, Neil joined first the Scottish College of Textiles and subsequently Paisley College of Technology. He finally left Paisley at the end of 1978 to join the Government Economic Service in Edinburgh as economic advisor. This brief spell ended in September 1979 when Strathclyde University secured his services as Professor of Business Administration, whilst encouraging him to remain involved with the then Scottish Development Agency as consultant in inward investment and small firm development. Read more about Neil Hood

Professor Ian Simpson Hughes

Ian Simpson Hughes was Professor of Physics in the University of Glasgow until his retirement in 1989, and was a figure of national importance in the development of Elementary Particle Physics. He gained a B Sc in Natural Philosophy in Glasgow in 1952, studying under Dee, Gunn, MacFarlane and Touschek, and proceeded to post-graduate studies in the same place. In so doing, he embarked on a research career in particle physics – arguably the most fundamental area of all physics which explores the basic building blocks of nature deep within the atom. His research employed the nuclear emulsion technique to study the properties of some of these fundamental particles and the polarisation of gamma rays from nuclear sources. Although a precise technique, the use of nuclear emulsions involved the painstaking scanning and measurement of photographic plates using microscopes over periods of many months and so the data collection rate was very slow. Read more about Ian Simpson Hughes

John Hewett Hull

John Hull was born in Manchester on the 18th June 1934 and died in his 80th year on the 12th March 20014. It has often been said that “Geologists and good company, especially for other geologists”. John Hull modified that rule and was good company for all but yes, especially for other geologists! John attended the University in Birmingham, attracted by the opportunity to study geophysics as part of his geology degree. Here, also the foundations were laid for John’s applied approach to geology. He took Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering for one year and a couple of years of Mine Surveying, skills that would stand him in good stead in his future career. He also did post-graduate research into the gravity and magnetic variations across Central and South Wales and also worked on seismic surveys of Cardigan Bay and their interpretation, again laying foundations for future major contributions. Read more about John Hull

Lord Hunter of Newington

Robert Brockie Hunter, a distinguished Professor of Therapeutics and university administrator, leader and motivator of medical research, who became Principal and Vice Chancellor of Birmingham University was born on 14th July 1915 and died on March 24th 1994. A product of George Watson's College, he graduated in medicine from Edinburgh University in 1938, and having joined the Royal Army Medical Corps, soon found himself posted to France at the outbreak of the Second World War. With the German breakthrough in 1940, he managed to escape with his unit at St Nazaire. After a short spell on leave, he was then posted overseas to join the 8th Army in North Africa, but returned home again before 'D-Day' in 1944 to become personal physician to General (later Field Marshall) Montgomery at the outset of the North European Campaign. Read more about Lord Hunter of Newington

Thomas Oliver Hutchison

Although Tom Hutchison, who died on June 6, 1998, in his 68th year, spent the greater part of his business career outside Scotland, he never lost touch with his native roots. As a Director, and latterly as a Deputy Governor, of the Bank of Scotland for 12 years until he retired in June 1997, he made an important contribution to the development of that quintessentially Scottish institution. Born and educated in Hawick (where Bill MacLaren saw him into the 1949 Border Schoolboys XV) he graduated from St Andrews, with a First Class Honours in Science and set about developing his industrial experience. He made his name in ICI with the merging of the plastics and petrochemicals divisions and the subsequent restructuring of the combined business of which he was chairman. Read more about Thomas Oliver Hutchison

Thomas Sherret Hutchison

The Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario, lost recently one of its most distinguished scientists and administrators. Dr Hutchison came to Canada in 1950 to form part of the team that would convert the pre-war military academy in Kingston into a full-scale university with recognised academic credentials. With the help of his guidance and example the Faculty of Science and the College as a whole developed a reputation in research and education that enabled RMC to take an honourable place among the other universities in Canada. Read more about Thomas Sherret Hutchison

Frederick Bruce Hutt

Frederick Hutt was born in Guelph, Canada on 20th August 1897 and died on 6th September 1991 shortly after his 94th birthday. He was a Canadian citizen of Scottish descent whose long and illustrious career was set off by a fortunate present when he was a schoolboy helping his father on the family farm. This gift was a 'setting' hen and a clutch of eggs for her to hatch. The young Hutt's enthusiasm was so great that he was soon breeding Barred Plymouth Rocks for sale as ready-to-lay pullets with a view to helping to pay for his college education. He became a student of Professor W G Graham, who had made the stimulating gift, and earned a BSA degree at the Agricultural college of Guelph in 1923. This was followed rapidly by an MS degree in genetics at the University of Wisconsin in 1925 and an MA at the University of Manitoba in 1927, where he became a lecturer in animal husbandry. Read more about Frederick Bruce Hutt

Violet Rosemary Strachan Hutton

Dr Violet Rosemary Strachan Hutton passed away peacefully after a short illness at St Andrews Memorial Hospital on April 1st, 2004. Rosemary, as she preferred to be known, was born on October 22nd 1925 in Dundee where she attended Harris Academy for her primary and secondary education. In 1943 she entered St Andrews University in the Faculty of Science, graduating in 1948 with an Honours MA degree in Mathematics and Physics. In 1949 she took up an appointment with the British Jute Association in Dundee, but she resigned after a few years finding that the physics of textiles was not sufficiently challenging. Read more about Violet Rosemary Strachan Hutton

Andrew Fielding Huxley

Professor Sir Andrew Huxley, widely regarded as one of Britain's most eminent scientists and great university administrators, the former master of Trinity College, Cambridge, shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1963 with Sir Alan Hodgkin, a lifelong friend and collaborator, and with Australian scientist Sir John Eccles, who was cited for research on synapses. They received the prize for unravelling the biophysical mechanism of nerve impulses which control muscle action. Read more about Sir Andrew Huxley
This obituary was first published in The Independent on 6 June 2012. Reproduced by permission of The Independent


Follow Us: