NEWSLETTER No. 37   May 2016




This issue contains

Theatre Trip:    HMS Pinafore

Other forthcoming events: Brighton Sewers; Talk with meal, Sir Richard Jolly; BREMF

Recent Suss-Ex activities

Scholarly activities by retired staff




®           Theatre Trip           ®



After an uninspiring few months in the Theatre Royal’s programme, there are now some more interesting possibilities. For a next Suss-Ex theatre trip, in late June, we propose the all-male version of Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore.  Some review comments:

·         'A coup ... the staging is ebullient and charming, choreography is riotously inventive ... this should leave you grinning like a Jolly Roger.'  The Times

·         'A delight from start to finish ... Brechtian theatre of the best kind, which keeps both cast and audience on their toes ... The chorus is tremendous.’ The Daily Telegraph

·         ‘so inventive and brilliant it takes your breath away’ Sussex Express

The ticket price will be £24.50.  As usual, a trip will be organised if enough people (at least 10) sign up for one date for us to get the group reduction.  Dinner together beforehand (or after if for the matinee) will be booked at Carluccio’s for those who would like it. 

A booking needs to be made promptly to ensure that tickets are available.  If you are interested, please let Jennifer Platt know by June 10th  (by e mail to - or phone 01273 555025, or post to 98 Beaconsfield Villas, Brighton BN1 6HE). 

Please use the slip at the end of the newsletter to show your preferences: just mark all days/times when you are free, numbering them in order of preference, and indicate the number of tickets wanted and whether you would like to join the group for dinner.  You will be notified of the outcome very soon after June 10.













Other Forthcoming Events



Visit to the Brighton Sewers

 Wednesday 13th July 2016, 6.15 pm for 6.30 pm


We have arranged a visit to the remarkable Brighton Sewers below the Old Steine on Wednesday 13 July 2016 starting at 6.30 pm. We will have professional guides. Contrary to what might be thought initially, participants on these tours do not get dirty!  The tour lasts for about an hour.

We have 20 places reserved with the cost per person £12. Only adults are allowed to participate.

We will meet at 6.15 pm at the starting point for the tour which is at Arch 260 just down the steps to the right of Brighton Pier when facing out to sea.

As I have had to pay for the tickets up front on my credit card, I'm afraid that you will have to send a cheque to me, rather than to the University. Please see the booking form at the end of the newsletter.

Do come along and book early as the number is strictly limited to 20. The deadline is the end of June. This tour is a must for residents and visitors to Brighton and gives a fascinating glimpse of Victorian engineering. I am attaching below two notes from Southern Water that you might find helpful in deciding whether this is for you.

Colin Finn, 3 May 2016



The minimum age for visitors is 11. We do not recommend the very elderly or infirm to join a tour because the sewers are slippery and have a number of steps and ladders to climb. Walking through them and climbing a 15 ft vertical exit ladder both require reasonable agility. 

Sewers are confined spaces and anyone who suffers from asthma, bronchial illness or angina may experience breathing problems. The tour is also not recommended for anyone who suffers from claustrophobia. If you have any doubts about your fitness to participate, please consult your GP. 


Dress for comfort, such as trousers or jeans with a long-sleeved top. We do not recommend wearing shorts or skirts. 

Open shoes or high heels are not allowed. We reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone who has incorrect footwear. You will be provided with protective latex gloves and safety helmets which must be worn at all times.


Talk plus meal: Professor Sir Richard Jolly

5th October 2016

The Cambridge Society of Sussex will host a talk plus evening meal, and are kindly offering Suss-Ex members the opportunity to attend.  The Cambridge Society of Sussex is an alumni group of Cambridge University and we welcome this opportunity to join with them on this occasion.
The speaker will be Professor Sir Richard Jolly whose talk will be entitled "UN ideas that changed the world".  The event will be on Wednesday 5th October, in the conference centre on the top floor of Bramber House on the Sussex University campus.  The evening will start with a glass of prosecco at 6.30 pm, followed by sitting down at about 7pm for a buffet meal.  Sir Richard's talk will follow the meal, with opportunity for questions and comments.

Full details of the menu, parking etc, price (£35-£40, we expect) will be circulated in late August/early September, when you will have the opportunity to book.  Save the date now!

Brighton Festival of Early Music


We hope to go once again to a BREMF show in November.  BREMF’s theme for this year is ‘Nature and Science’, with lots of interesting possibilities. Keep a look out for details in October!




Recent Suss-Ex Activities



22 February: About 15 members enjoyed a visit to the Exotic Creatures exhibition at the Royal Pavilion, which included an excellent talk by Alexandra Loske.


5 March: About 12 members attended a performance of Lysistrata by Aristophanes at Roedean School.


23 March: Meeting on Dementia

This was very successful; around 40 people came, we had two excellent speakers from the medical school who specialise on dementia and its treatment, and there was time for questions as well as tea.  We can surely be reassured by the finding that poor education and lack of cognitive stimulation are risk factors.  It was pointed out, however, that treatment needs to deal not only with the risk of getting dementia, but with practical daily ways of living once someone has it.  There is a tendency to regard all untoward behaviour as a symptom, when it may be a reaction to features of the environment.  Early intervention and diagnosis lead to much better outcomes.

We have not previously had a meeting of this kind, informative rather than entertaining, but this is entirely consistent with our remit; the possibility of another such meeting next year is being explored.  If you have any suggestions for this slot, they will be welcome.




Research Contributions by Retired Staff 2015



Retired members of staff are still members of the academic community and continue their intellectual involvement, expressed in academic journal articles, national and international conferences, and in the other responsibilities, as the list below shows.  If you did not send us details of your record, we may be able to find the space for it in the next Newsletter.


Chris Arthur

Interpretation and Reconstruction of Marx’s Capital: From a Systematic-Dialectic Perspective, Chinese translation of The New Dialectic and Marx’s ‘Capital’  (Brill: Leiden, Boston, Köln 2002), Beijing Normal University Press (Foreign Marxism Research Series), Sept 2015


Norman Billingham

Teaches and supervises projects in conservation at West Dean College.




Maggie Boden

Boden, M. A. “How Computational Creativity Began”. Foreword to T. R. Besold, M. Schorlemmer, and A. Smaill (eds.), (Paris: Atlantis Press), pp. v-xiii.

Boden, M. A. "Creativity and A-Life", in Artificial Life (special issue on art and creativity, ed. A. Dorin), 21(3): 354-365 (2015).

Boden, M. A. “Music and Machines”, (Guest article)

Boden, M. A. “Creativity as a Neuroscientific Mystery”, in S. Kakar and G. Blamberger (eds.), On Creativity (Penguin) . Reprinted from Boden, M. A. "Creativity as a Neuroscientific Mystery", in O. Vartanian, A. Bristol, and J. C. Kaufman (eds.), The Neuroscience of Creativity (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2013) pp. 3-18.

Papers given outside Sussex:

Public Lecture on “Immateriality and Computer Art”, Centre for the Philosophy of Natural and Social Science, LSE (January)

Keynote Speech on “Can Computers Do Social Science?” Conference on Scientific Discovery in the Social Sciences, LSE (January).

Keynote speaker on “Musical Creativity”, Mathemusical Conversations Workshop, National University of Singapore (Institute of Mathematical Sciences) and Conservatory of Music, Singapore (February).

Invited panellist on “Musical Generativities”, Mathemusical Conversations Workshop, National University of Singapore (Institute of Mathematical Sciences) and Conservatory of Music, Singapore (February).

Invited speaker on “Can Neuroscience Explain Creativity?” to Art and Mind Symposium, GV Gallery, London (March).

Invited speaker on “AI: Boring, Fascinating, or Frightening?” City of London School for Girls (March).

Invited speaker on “Creativity”, Science and Technology Group, Reform Club (March).

Keynote speech on “Can Neuroscience Explain Creativity?”   ISBCS -15 (International Symposium on Brain and Cognitive Science), University of Technology, Ankara, Turkey (April).

Invited speaker on “What Machines Can Tell Us About Consciousness” at Edinburgh Science Festival (April).

Invited panellist on “The Future of AI” to D-Group, London (May)

Invited speaker on “Creativity” at the Graduate School, De Montfort University, Leicester. (May)

Keynote speech on “Creativity and Design: What’s the Difference?”, AHRC Symposium on “Creativity and Cultures”, School of Design, University of Northumbria (May).

Invited speaker at Symposium on “Art That Makes Itself”, Waterman’s Art Centre, London (May).

Invited speaker on “Human-Level AI: Looming or Illusory?” Centre for Study of Existential Risk, University of Cambridge (June).

Opening lecture in University of Amsterdam’s Culture and Creativity Symposium, Amsterdam (September)

Invited talk on What Do I Do (AI and Cognitive Science at Queen’s Gate School, South Kensington (September).

Invited speaker on “AI” at “Exponential View” seminar, Second Home (October)

Invited speaker at Nobel Dialogue Day on “The Future of Intelligence”: panellist on “What is Intelligence?” and “Human and Artificial Perception”, and moderator on “Should we Fear or Welcome the Singularity?” (Gothenburg, December)

Other activities:

Appointed to Royal Society Working Group for their “major policy project” on Machine Learning.

Invited speaker (in 3 sessions) at “Nobel Dialogue” on “The Future of Intelligence” in Gothenberg, and attendance at Nobel Awards ceremony/banquet in Stockholm (December).

Interviewed for Swedish Radio’s main science programme, Stockholm Nobel week (December).

Invited session-moderator on “AI and Society” at FLI (Future of Life Institute) meeting on “The Future of AI”, Puerto Rico (January).

Invited to join the Big Innovation Centre (17 members).

Interviewed for BBC World Service “Inquiry” programme on the future of AI (January).

Participant in BBC Radio-4’s “Start the Week”, on creativity (January).

2-hour interview included in archive of “Film Interviews with Leading Thinkers”, collected by Prof. Alan Macfarlane, Cambridge (June).

On Program Committee for IJCAI-15’s track on “AI and the Arts”.

Invited talk on “Creativity”, St. Andrew’s Church, Hove (February).

Member of Council, Royal Institute of Philosophy.

Member of Advisory Board of CSRE: Centre for the Study of Existential Risk (Cambridge).


Benedict du Boulay, Department of Informatics

Good, J. & du Boulay, B. (Eds.). (2015). Guest Editorial Preface to Special Issue on Personalised Learning. International Journal of People-Oriented Programming (IJPOP), 3(2).
Porayska-Pomsta, K., du Boulay, B. & McCalla, G. (Eds.). (2015). Les Contes du Mariage: Should AI stay married to ED? A workshop at AIED2015 examining the current and future identity of the AIED field. Madrid, Spain.
Howland, K., Good, J. & du Boulay, B. (2015). Narrative Support for Young Game Designers’ Writing. Paper presented at the Interaction Design and Children Conference (IDC 2015), Boston, USA, 178-187.
Hull, A. & du Boulay, B. (2015). Motivational and Metacognitive Feedback in SQL-Tutor*. Computer Science Education, 25(2), 238-256.

James Bryant []

Tony Fielding

Fielding, T., 2015, Asian Migrations: Social and Geographical Mobilities in Southeast, East and Northeast Asia. London: Routledge (a textbook published in paperback and hardback);

Fielding, A., 2015, Migration: Economic Drivers of Contemporary Labour Mobility in East Asia. Singapore: World Scientific/Imperial College Press (a collection of essays).


Charles Goldie

Referee for Indagationes Mathematicae. Reviewer for Mathematical Reviews.
Co-organised, with Aleksandar Mijatovic and Rüdiger Kiesel, the conference "Limit Theorems in Probability", 23-26 March 2015, at Imperial College London, with funding from the London Mathematical Society and the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council.


Jim Hanson

Chiral cyclic synthetic intermediates from readily available monoterpenoids, J. R. Hanson, Journal of Chemical Research, 2015, 39, 677-682.
Recent advances in the chemistry of terpenoids, J. R. Hanson, Journal of  Chemical Research, 2015, 39, 738.
Chiral acyclic synthetic intermediates from readily available monoterpenoids, J. R. Hanson, Journal of Chemical Research, 2015, 39, 617-621.
Unexpected mild protection of alcohols as 2-O-THF and 2-O-THP ethers catalysed by Cp2TiCl, M. J. Duran-Pena, J. M. Botubol-Ares, J. R. Hanson, R. Hernandez-Galan and I. G. Collado, European Journal of Organic Chemistry, 2015, 6333-6340.
Titanium carbenoid-mediated cyclopropanation of allylic alcohols: Selectivity and mechanism, M. J. Duran-Pena, J. M. Botubol-Ares, J. R. Hanson, R Hernandez-Galan and I. G. Collado, Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, 2015, 13, 6325-6332.
The aromatization of terpenes and steroids by dehydrogenation, J. R. Hanson, Journal of Chemical Research, 2015, 39, 127-133.
The synthesis of 3-hydroxy-2,4,8-trimethyldec-8-enolide and an approach to 3,4-dihydroxy-2,4,6,8-tetramethyldec-8-enolide, J. M. Botubol-Ares, M. J. Duran-Pena, A. J. Macias-Sanchez, J. R. Hanson, I. G. Collado and R. Hernandez-Galan, Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, 2015, 13, 465-476.
Current strategies for the elucidation of the structures of natural products, J. R. Hanson, Science Progress, 2015, 98, 177-188.
Diterpenoids of terrestrial origin (2013)  J. R. Hanson, Natural Product Reports, 2015, 32, 76-87.
Diterpenoids of terrestrial origin (2014)  J. R. Hanson, Natural Product Reports, 2015, 32, 1654-1663.
Biological activity of natural sesquiterpenoids containing a gem-dimethylcyclopropane unit, M. J. Duran-Pena, J. M. Botubol-Ares, J. R. Hanson, I. G. Collado and R. Hernandez-Galan,  Natural Product Reports, 2015, 32, 1236-1248.
Sir John Cornforth AC CBE FRS. His synthetic work, R. Purchase and J. R. Hanson, Science Progress, 2015, 98, 219-229.
Sir John Cornforth AC CBE FRS. His biosynthetic work, R. Purchase and J. R. Hanson, Science Progress, 2015, 98, 230-243.
Sir John and Lady Rita Cornforth. A distinguished chemical partnership, R. Purchase and J. R. Hanson, Science Progress, 2015, 212-218.
Foreword to the special feature on Sir John Cornforth, R. Purchase and J. R. Hanson, Science Progress, 2015, 98, 211)
Lecturer on the International Summer School ( 16 × 2 h lectures)
Editor : Journal of Chemical Research. International Editorial Board:  Natural Product Reports; Natural Product Research; Mendeleev Communications.
External examiner: (Chairman of the External Examiners),   Institute of Chemistry, Sri Lanka. (under the auspices of the Royal Society of Chemistry)
Organized with Dr. R. Purchase,  the Royal Society of Chemistry Historical Group meeting on the 'Life and Work of Sir John Cornforth' 15th March 2015.

Alan Lehmann, Genome Damage and Stability Centre

A Distinct Genotype of XP Complementation Group A: Surprisingly Mild Phenotype Highly Prevalent in Northern India/Pakistan/Afghanistan. Sethi M, Haque S, Fawcett H, Wing JF, Chandler N, Mohammed S, Frayling IM, Norris PG, McGibbon D, Young AR, Sarkany RP, Lehmann AR, Fassihi H. J Invest Dermatol. 2015. Dec 29 doc10.1016/j.jid 12.031

Chromatin association of the SMC5/6 complex is dependent on binding of its NSE3 subunit to DNA.’ Zabrady K, Adamus M, Vondrova L, Liao C, Skoupilova H, Novakova M, Jurcisinova L, Alt A, Oliver AW, Lehmann AR, Palecek JJ.

Nucleic Acids Res . 2015 Oct 7. pii: gkv1021.

XRCC4 deficiency in human subjects causes a marked neurological phenotype but no overt immunodeficiency.’ Guo C, Nakazawa Y, Woodbine L, Björkman A, Shimada M, Fawcett H, Jia N, Ohyama K, Li TS, Nagayama Y, Mitsutake N, Pan-Hammarström Q, Gennery AR, Lehmann AR, Jeggo PA, Ogi T. J Allergy Clin. Immunol. 2015 Oct;136(4):1007-17. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2015.06.007..

USP7 is essential for maintaining Rad18 stability and DNA damage tolerance.

Zlatanou A, Sabbioneda S, Miller ES, Greenwalt A, Aggathanggelou A, Maurice MM, Lehmann AR, Stankovic T, Reverdy C, Colland F, Vaziri C, Stewart GS.

Oncogene. 2015 May 11. doi: 10.1038/onc.2015.149.


TFIIH-dependent MMP-1 overexpression in trichothiodystrophy leads to extracellular matrix alterations in patient skin.

Arseni L, Lanzafame M, Compe E, Fortugno P, Afonso-Barroso A, Peverali FA, Lehmann AR, Zambruno G, Egly JM, Stefanini M, Orioli D.

Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2015 Feb 3;112(5):1499-504. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1416181112.

The melanoma-associated antigen 1 (MAGEA1) protein stimulates the E3 ubiquitin-ligase activity of TRIM31 within a TRIM31-MAGEA1-NSE4 complex.

Kozakova L, Vondrova L, Stejskal K, Charalabous P, Kolesar P, Lehmann AR, Uldrijan S, Sanderson CM, Zdrahal Z, Palecek JJ.

Cell Cycle. 2015;14(6):920-30. doi: 10.1080/15384101.2014.1000112.

Xeroderma pigmentosum in the United kingdom.

Lehmann AR. Photochem Photobiol. 2015 Mar-Apr;91(2):484-5. doi: 10.1111/php.12301.

Other activities

Conference on SMC proteins, Vienna, May, Invited Speaker

Tomas Lindahl Symposium on DNA Repair, Oslo, June, Invited Speaker

European Association for Dermatology and Venereology annual conference, Copenhagen, October, Invited speaker

Associate Co-editor, DNA Repair Journal

PhD thesis examiner, Bangor University, October


Laci Löb

 Postcards from Bergen-Belsen. István Irsai and his graphic art. With contributions from Ladislaus Löb, Thomas Rahe and Miryam Sommerfeld-Irsai. Lower Saxony Memorials Foundation: Bergen-Belsen Memorial 2015, 67 pp. Main contribution and English translation by Ladislaus Löb (English edition of Postkarten von Bergen-Belsen. István Irsai und sein graphisches Werk. Bergen-Belsen Memorial 2014)

Numerous talks on the Kasztner affair, mainly for Outreach programme of Holocaust Educational Trust.


Margaret McGowan
'Henri IV as Architect and Restorer of the State', Ceremonial Entries (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2015), pp. 53-76
'Ronsard and the Visual Arts. A Study of Poetic Creativity', Journal of the Waarburg and Courtauld Institutes, December, 2015
Translation of Francoise Dartois-Lapeyre, 'A multi-layered analysis of dancing in eighteenth century opera', Dance Research, 2015, pp. 124-42
'Touching on something deep: Frances A. Yates and the Warburg Institute',
De Gruter, 2015, pp. 109-116

 'Marguerite de Valois, reine de Navarre (1553-1615: patronesss and performer', Early Music Studies, November, 2015
Conference Papers:
'Learning and skills in the service of the French Court', Warburg Institute, February 2015. 'The Mascarade Tradition at Binche, 1549', University of Mons, October, 2015


John Nixon

Volatility driven differences in amine substitution reactions of trichloromethyl and trifluoromethyl difluorophosphines, CX3PF2 (X = F, Cl): A computational study, J. F. Nixon, L. Nyulászi and D. Szieberth Heteroatom Chem., 2015, 26, 307.



Jennifer Platt

‘Biographie in der Soziologiegeschichte’, pp. 149-191 in ed. Christian Dayé and Stephan Moebius, Soziologiegeschichte: Wege und Ziele, Berlin: Suhrkamp. 2015

Book review  Leandro Rodriguez Medina, Centers and Peripheries in Knowledge Production International Sociology March 2015 30: 211-214.

Referee for History of the Human Sciences and International Journal of Social Research Methodology

Chosen as Current Sociology’s ‘Sociologist of the month’, October 2015.

Member, Advisory Board, for RCHS 2016 Interim Meeting, Warsaw

Network for Research on the History of the Social Sciences, Potsdam, paper given: ‘How representative of the discipline are the contents of leading journals?

Attended American Sociological Association conference and participated in its Opportunities in Retirement Network


Michael Ramsey  Evolution, Behaviour and Environment Subject Group

Ramsey M.H., Ellison S.L.R (2015) ‘Uncertainty Factor: an alternative way to express measurement uncertainty in chemical measurement.’ Accreditation and Quality Assurance: Journal for Quality, Comparability and Reliability in Chemical Measurement. (Accepted 19/02/2015)

Rostron, P., Heathcote, J.A. Ramsey, M.H. (2015) ‘Evaluation of uncertainties in in situ and ex situ gamma measurements on land areas with low contamination levels.’ Journal of Radiological Protection 35 (2015) 391-399.

Rostron P., Heathcote J. and Ramsey, M.H. (2015) ‘Making best use of in situ gamma measurements in radioactively contaminated land investigations.’ Nuclear Future Volume 11, Issue 1, January 2015

Ramsey M.H. (2014) ‘Sampling error and measurement uncertainty’. Future Science. DOI:10.4155/EBO.13.372 (p 26-45) as Chapter 2 in ‘Quality assurance and quality control of environmental field sampling’. Editors: Zhang C, Mueller JF, Mortimer MR (DOI:10.4155/9781909453043)

Conference papers and invited talks

Ramsey M.H. (2015) ‘Soil sampling: when can modelling and statistics be useful?’ BLRS-SCI Joint Seminar on the ISO 18400 Standards Relating to Soil Quality Issues, University of Newcastle, March 4th 2015. (Invited Lecture)

Ramsey, M.H. and Wiedenbeck M. (2015) ‘Characterizing Isotopic Homogeneity of Candidate Reference Materials at the Picogram Sampling Scale.’ 2015, (9th International Conference on the analysis of Geological and Environmental Materials), Montan Universitat, Leoben, Austria,  9-14th August 2015 (Lecture) (Abstract volume page 66)

Research students:

Grace Solomon-Wisdom (2015). The effect in situ heterogeneity of lead in soil on plant uptake.

Invited Chair of Royal Society of Chemistry/ Analytical Methods Committee (RSC/AMC) Sub-committee on Sampling Uncertainty and Quality

Referee for journals including Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Analytical Methods Accreditation and Quality Assurance: Journal for Quality, Comparability and Reliability in Chemical Measurement


David Smith

The steric influence of β-diketiminato ligands on the coordination chemistry of lead(II), E C Y Tam, M P Coles, J. D Smith, J R Fulton, Polyhedron 85 (2015) 284-294 



Robert Smith

Smith, R.C., Echevarría, J., Venancio Hernandez, J. and Szkody, P., “SS Cygni revisited”, in The Golden Age of Cataclysmic Variables and Related Objects 2, F. Giovannelli & L. SabauGraziati (eds.), Acta Polytechnica CTU Proceedings, 2(1), pp. 148–151, 2015.


Mike Wallis

Coevolution of insulin-like growth factors, insulin and their receptors and binding proteins in New World Monkeys. Growth Hormone and IGF Research 25, 158-167. 

Invited speaker, Wenner-Gren Symposium on "Coevolution of Receptors and Ligands" (September 2015; Stockholm). Talk title: "Growth hormone, prolactin and their receptors.”








Chris Ravilious  (9 February 1938 – 26 January 2016)


1968, Senior Library Assistant;  1974, Assistant Librarian; 1981, Sub-Librarian;  retired 1998.


He was a lovely man, and always a pleasure to work with.* This simple sentence epitomises Library memories of Chris.  He was liked for himself, and respected as a colleague who over the years demonstrated a wide range of professional competences: among his responsibilities were, at different times, cataloguing, audio-visual materials, special collections, building maintenance and services, acquisitions, information services. For many years he managed the work of the Reader’s Advisory Desk, the first port of call for all manner of searches for information. Later, as Sub-Librarian, he was a member of the Library’s senior management team. Wherever he worked he was a good boss to have.


Chris’s many skills included the writing of immaculate prose, and Peter Lewis, then Librarian, who was engaged in international negotiations about the revision of cataloguing rules, gave him the responsibility of drafting the new International Standard Bibliographic Description for Non-Book Materials. Chris was later appointed Chair of the IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations) committee which coordinated multinational work on the ISBD(NBM) and saw it through to publication in 1977.


He had a sharp wit and a well-developed dry sense of humour… he had an ability to deliver completely deadpan comments that were incredibly funny - but always relevant to the matter being discussed.  Their impact was enhanced by the fact that he always wore a suit and tie long after the rest of us had descended into "informality".  This distinctive style perhaps had drawbacks:  one of the Library porters once told me he thought Chris was not comfortable dealing with users detected attempting to remove library books illicitly: ‘he was too much of a gentleman, you see’, adding ‘whereas you …’ , but the sentence was never finished.


With all this there was a shy friendliness which perhaps reflected the fact that it was in the Library that, according to Julian, his son, Chris spent many of his happiest hours.   I doubt whether any of us realised this was the case: he was someone who tended to compartmentalise his life, and generally kept his social life and various interests very separate from his work life, so we knew little about his life outside the LibraryMost of us knew he was the nephew of the artist Eric Ravilious.  Some of us knew of his passion for chess, but the extent of this passion became apparent only when we read the appreciations on the website of the English Chess Forum (


I learned more about his non-library life from thirty minutes at his funeral service than I had done in thirty years as a colleague.  It was not particularly surprising to learn that at Eastbourne Grammar School he flourished in the debating society, but it was a surprise to learn of his acting in school plays.  I did not realise that this high flying librarian had never completed his library exams, or know that this qualified teacher – he had a Sussex B.Ed degree – had never taught.  It was not much of a surprise to learn that he was an avid collector, not only of books, but of other media as well, but I did not realise he had a great love of the music of J.S. Bach.  I had not known that, sadly, for the last four years of his life he had suffered from the debilitating condition of Parkinson’s disease.


As I have indicated, Chris chose to keep his personal life quite separate from his professional world.   This memoir, originating in that professional world, should properly also close in it.  The following note by a colleague places him in that world, and provides the kind of testimony which any professional would be glad to receive.  It is one Chris richly merited.  I always enjoyed working with and for him, and admired him as a very capable, straightforward and good-natured colleague.


Adrian Peasgood, Librarian, 1987-2000

* Passages in italics are by some of Chris’s Library colleagues          .


David Chappell


David Chappell, formerly the accountant for the Arts and Social Studies Area (as it was then called), has died at home in Gothenburg after a period of illness. He died on 18th February 2016 and his funeral took place in Sweden.


David first came to Sussex in 1964 to work in the Salaries Office, which at that time was located in Stanmer House. After a period of work at Exeter University from 1966, he returned to Sussex in 1970 to take up the post of Student Accounts Supervisor in Sussex House. Certain administrative functions had been devolved to major areas of the University in the mid-sixties, and David took up the role of Arts Accountant in the Arts and Social Studies Office in 1974. It was from this post that David took most satisfaction as he greatly valued the opportunity to work closely with academic colleagues in the Arts Area.


While he was always assiduous in carrying out his professional responsibilities, David’s sense of fun endeared him to his immediate colleagues without in any way affecting the respect in which he was widely held. David took early retirement from Sussex in 1987 and relocated to Sweden with his wife Annelen to begin a new chapter in his life.


A memorial service for David is to be held on 18th July 2016 and anybody wishing to attend should contact his daughter Helen at for further details.

Tony Sims


The following obituaries have appeared since the last newsletter in the Staff Bulletin.

Either go to www. Click on Staff, then A-Z, then S, then Staff –The Suss-Ex Club (former staff). Scroll down to Miscellany and click on the first item to get an alphabetical list, which also gives links to obituaries published in national and international newspapers and journals.

Or go to Click on A-Z, then B, then Bulletin, then View back copies. Click on the date and then the name of the person you are seeking.


John Murrell: Staff Bulletin 5 February 2016, Guardian 18 March 2016 online, 5 April 2016 print.


Asa Briggs (Lord Briggs of Lewes): Staff Bulletin 18 March 2016, Telegraph 16 March 2016 online, Guardian 15 March 2016 (online), 19 March 2016 (print), Financial Times 15 March 2016 online.


Tim Metham: Staff Bulletin 1 April 2016.


Sir Denys Wilkinson: Staff Bulletin 29 April 2016.


David Chappell: Staff Bulletin 20 May 2016


Sir Harry Kroto: Staff Bulletin 2 May 2016, Guardian 6 May 2016, Telegraph 2 May 2016, Times 4 May 2016, Independent 6 May 2016, THES 5 May 2016, New York Times 4 May 2016, Terra Firma 5 May 2016, Chemistry World 3 May 201, Chemical and Engineering News 2 May 2016.


John Nixon and David Smith add:

The story of C60 provides a good example of the concept of interdisciplinarity that informed the thinking of the early days of the University. Of course Harry provided the motivation, drive, imagination and perseverance that eventually brought the project to fruition but his gregarious outgoing personality meant that he bounced his ideas off numerous colleagues and got offers of help in return. Outside Sussex he collaborated with astronomers and physicists, especially Richard Smalley and Robert Curl in Texas, with whom he shared the Nobel Prize.

At Sussex he had coffee-time conversations with astronomers and a wide range of chemists in the School of Chemistry and Molecular Sciences (MOLS), including John Nixon and David Walton, who were studying small molecules related to those Harry’s astronomer friends had detected in space. [David subsequently looked after some of Harry’s students during his frequent trips abroad.] Jim Hanson and Roger Taylor accepted the challenge of trying to isolate C60, using techniques developed for the separation of minute amounts of organic substances extracted from plants, insects and fungi. Ali Abdul-Sada recorded the mass spectra that indicated the presence of C60 and related molecules, now called fullerenes. When large enough samples were obtained Tony Avent confirmed that the all the carbon atoms in C60 were equivalent.

The writers of Harry’s obituaries have referred to his flair for visual display. Two examples of   his work for MOLS are shown. The first was designed as the cover for a booklet at a time when the success of the University in the competitive UK market was not established. The second was a poster for the 1983 British Association for the Advancement of Science meeting at Sussex. If you enlarge the image you can see the ingenuity and creative imagination in Harry’s representation of the 14 sciences featured in the meeting.

At the time of Harry’s Nobel Prize his 1981 prediction that C60 would be found in space, probably in charged form C60+, could not be verified, but in 2015 John Maier of the University of Basel found that Harry was right. At a meeting at the Royal Society of Chemistry, one of the last that he attended, Harry was delighted. ‘This will change everything’ he said, and joked that because of the vastness of space the total amount of carbon as C60 must far exceed the amount on Earth as coal!








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