Class Notes



Dr Valerie Warr (née Coghlan) (BEng Hons Mechanical Engineering 1970, PhD 1975) is Director of the Heswall Arts Festival and manager for the L’Orchestra dell’Arte, a group of talented musicians who perform as a salon or symphony orchestra.

Michael Williams (BA Hons English Language & Literature 1970) has recently published a new book, The Trains Now Departed: Sixteen Journeys in to the Lost Delights of Britain’s Railways following on from his bestselling books On the Slow Train and Steaming to Victory. He is currently working on his latest book commission which will be a history of the development of modern time.

Xenis Xenides (BEng Electronics 1970) returned to home country Cyprus after graduation, where he was offered employment by the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority CYTA. Xenis worked for this company until the year 2001, when he decided to have an early retirement. Xenis served in managerial positions in many sections, such as the Submarine Cable Station, the Satellite Earth Station, Digital Switching Centers Installation and the Planning Section for the Air Traffic Control Centers. After the year 2001, Xenis created his own company alongside his son and to offer companies server hosting and Internet services.

Professor Anthony Gillespie (BEng Hons Electronics 1970) is a Visiting Professor at the University College London and recently retired Fellow at the Air and Weapon Systems Department at the Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (Dstl). He was elected a Fellow of The Royal Academy of Engineering in 2014 for is distinguished research, leadership and technical contributions to military avionics including the development of millimetric sensors, autorouting and notably work on the development of electronically scanned antennas for UK fast jets. More recently he has developed novel engineering methodologies to ensure highly-automated systems comply with international humanitarian law.


Michael O’Callaghan (BSc 1971, BSc Hons Botany 1972) after teaching for 38 years, he is now happily retired enjoying campaigning for action on climate change, gardening and walking. He would be glad to hear from old friends. Email:

Ian Temple (BA Hons English Language & Literature 1971) after graduation worked for 25 years in the Supply Branch of the RAF and then for 16 years working for the British Red Cross until retirement in 2013. He is now catching up on his reading, travelling and voluntary work and awaiting the birth of his first grandchild.

Robert (Bob) Pointing (MCD 1971) has now retired after a career in urban regeneration. He is Visiting Fellow at the Heseltine Institute at the University of Liverpool and North West Partnership Chair, Canal and River Trust. He still lives in Liverpool but has a ‘modest’ country seat in Barrow-in-Furness and is Emeritus Shrievalty Factotum to the former High Sheriff of Merseyside.

Joseph Conneely (BA Hons Modern History and Geography 1971) after 40 years as a chartered accountant - including 25 years as a partner in international practices specialising in international tax advice - retired in 2011. He has just completed a BA honours degree in film making at the Met Film School in London which will hopefully set him up for his second career.


Peter Lake

Peter Lake (BSc 1972, BSc Hons Psychology 1973, Cert. in Education 1974, pictured above), former General Secretary of the Athletic Union, completed the 2014 cycling event: L’Etape du Tour, from Pau to Hautacam in the Pyrenees.

Catherine Broun (née Gray) (MBChB 1972) is still working as a General Medical Practitioner, 19 hours a week. She enjoys it a lot still - fun, and the money is very good. She is saving a lot of superannuation via Australia's "Transition to Retirement" and hoping to be fit enough to travel when she does retire, since she had a second major Lumbar Spinal surgery in May this year. To make up for no holiday in 2017, Catherine and her husband Peter plan to go to Spain and Canada this year, avoiding winter! However, Tasmania is a great place to live - always good to get home!


Teresa Holmes (BA Hons Political Theory & Institutions 1973, MA Victorian Literature 2006) has just completed a Fine Art degree at UCLan and would like to develop a creative practice comprising art and writing.

Christopher Graham (BA Hons History 1973) is non-executive Chair of Capacity - The Public Services Lab, based at the Cunard Building. You can visit for their work re-imagining the delivery of public services in the Liverpool City Region. They are currently working with the local voluntary, charitable, and social enterprise sector as well as local commissioning organisations to find ways of delivering services that make a real difference for clients. As Vice-President of Council, Christopher is also very much involved in the governance of his alma mater.

Reunion PhotoLynn Whitfield (née Cooper) (BSc 1973, BSc Hons Geology Hons 1974) arranged a reunion of the Honours Geology class of ’74 for the first time in June this year. The photo shows (from left to right) Nigel Moore, Lynn, Martyn Cowley, Jane Bayley, Bob Agar, Jane Davidson (née Matthews), Biff Vernon and Doug Haynes. If any lost members of the class want to attend the next reunion email:

Nicholas Murray (BA Hons English Language & Literature 1973) is the winner of the 2015 Basil Bunting Award for Poetry. The winning poem was included in his latest collection The Secrets of the Sea. He was joint second prize winner in the inaugural Ruskin Prize for Poetry awarded in March 2015 by the University of Roehampton Poetry Centre.

Phil Royle (BA Hons Geography 1973) after 36 years of teaching - one of them Geography teacher and the other 35 with deaf children, Phil took early retirement six years ago whilst he still retained a small modicum of sanity. As a retirement present to himself, Phil bought a Morgan 4/4 sport in which he travels all over the place. He also volunteers on Mondays at Kedleston Hall for the National Trust and invites anyone who knows him to pop in to see him sometime. Phil has a four year old grandson who keeps him on his toes - although he does run 20 miles per week to keep middle-aged spread at bay.

Nigel Taylor (LLB Hons 1973), following more than 30 years of legal practice in London and Hong Kong, now owns two restaurants and a cocktail bar in the Isle of Man. He is hoping to find premises in Liverpool for his first off-island hospitality venture.


Malcolm SleeMalcolm Slee (BSc Hons Mathematics 1974)began an actuarial career after graduation and now works in the Risk department of Aviva based in York. In 2014 he was elected onto the council of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries and regularly presents at conferences.

Dorothy Black (BEd Hons 1974) a Lecturer in the School of Education at Ulster University was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to cross community relations and education in Northern Ireland.

Helen Matthews (BA Hons English Language & Literature 1974) has published her debut thriller After Leaving the Village by Hashtag Press. Find out more at:

John Thomas Wrigley (BSc Hons Biochemistry 1974) recently retired from his post with the North Cumbria University Hospital NHS Trust as Pathology IT Manager across East/West Cumbria and hopes to develop his interests in music and travel.


Mark Lawrence Andrew Moore (formerly Sims) (BA Hons Modern History 1975), having pursued careers in the public service - first as a Major Projects Manager, then as a regional consultant with the MOJ’s former Legal Services Commission and finally as Director of Advice Services development with a law centre - is now happily retired keeping bees, making wine and mead, market gardening, writing and studying for an English Language & Literature honours degree.

Dr David Baglee (BEng Hons Electronics 1975, PhD 1978) retired from Intel Corp in 2013 after 35 years in various technical and managerial roles. He and wife Susan live in Albuquerque, New Mexico and enjoys relaxing, playing golf and travelling to see their three daughters. He is still in touch with a few people but would love to hear from other old friends. Email:


John Desmond Bishop (BA Hons Social Studies 1976, MA 1979)retired last year after 32 years as a sociology lecturer. He says that without the University he would not have had his rewarding and enjoyable career.

James Dempsey (BA Hons English Language & Literature 1976)is an instructor in Humanities and Arts at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts, US. He has published The Tortured Life of Scofield Thayer – a biography of the conflicted promoter of modernism, and friend, patron and cuckold of EE Cummings.

Shahla Abtahee (née A-Sepah) (MCommH 1976) taught and was highly involved in program planning in Iran for 10 years at university level. She moved to the US in 1986 and worked as a health care worker at the Department of Health. She retired in 2013 and is now involved in health need assessment and health consulting part time.

Professor Stephen Hawkins (BSc Hons Marine Biology 1976, PhD Marine Biology 1980, DSc 2008) after stepping down as Dean of Natural and Environmental Sciences at Southampton in December 2015, Stephen had 18 months sabbatical based at the Marine Biological Association Plymouth, but also working in Brazil and Singapore with shorter working visits to the Canaries, Hong Kong, Italy, Portugal, Ireland, Belgium, France and the US. His final working week before retirement at the end of June 2017 was spent on the Isle of Man doing rocky shore surveys - back where his research career began at Port Erin in 1975.

Captain Eric Howard (BSc 1976, BSc Hons Physical Geography and Geology 1977, pictured above) served in the RAF as a pilot and flew the Nimrod, seeing active service in the Falklands campaign of 1982. In 1989 he joined British Airways, flying Boeing 757s and 767s. In 1995 he converted to the Boeing 747-400 and is now a captain and flies all over the world. He is married to an airline purser and has two children.

Eric Gilhooley (BSc Hons Zoology 1976) has retired after 35 years at St Robert of Newminster School and Sixth Form College in Washington, Tyne and Wear. During his time he worked as a biology and science teacher, Head of Biology, and Head of Science. He is hoping to spend more time as a volunteer with Teesdale and Weardale Search and Mountain Rescue Team.

Jane Mitchell (née Slack) (BA Hons German 1976, CertEd 1977) left teaching German and French in 2001. After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002 she changed career and opened a B&B, which appeared on Channel Four’s Four in a Bed.


Ian McKee (BA Hons Geography 1977) is a senior casework executive at Hull Land Registry and has worked for HM Land Registry in three different offices over a career spanning 36 years. He has been married to Carolyn McKee (née Jones) (BA Hons French 1980) for 33 years after meeting at the University as students. Carolyn is Head Teacher of Springhead Primary School in Hull.

Hilary Burrage (CertEd 1977) was a member of staff at the University of Liverpool during the 70s and 80s in Sociology and Medicine. She has written a book, Eradicating Female Genital Mutilation: a UK perspective, and is very involved in the eradication of FGM and is a consultant for The Guardian. For more information

Ross Duggan (LLB 1977) is now a Circuit Judge in the Lancashire Family Court. After a career at the Liverpool Bar, he was appointed a Circuit Judge in 2006, sitting in Stoke on Trent, returning home to Lancashire in 2014.

the front cover of his new  book shows John at dawn in Palenque’s Maya ruinsJohn Harrison (MCD 1977), celebrated successful throat cancer treatment by visiting Mexico to research his new travel book 1519 A Journey to the End of Time which was launched at the Edinburgh Festival this year. The front cover of his new book shows John at dawn in Palenque’s Maya ruins.


Linda Catherine Shuttleworth (née Morrison) (MPsychol 1978, Diploma in Psychotherapy 1985) is a clinical psychologist for the Cheshire and Wirral Partnership (CWP) NHS Foundation Trust and is involved in developing a mental health partnership between CWP and Kisiizi Hospital in South West Uganda.

Professor Keith Wilkes (PhD 1978) has been promoted from Dean at the School of Tourism to Executive Dean in the Faculty of Management at Bournemouth University. He is hoping to retire soon after an enjoyable academic career in HE.

Anne Hodgkins (BSc Hons Microbiology 1978) due to a severe accident to her right hand, Anne was unable to continue in a bench scientific career (but did learn to write with her left hand!) so joined the pharmaceutical industry and worked in many roles including marketing, clinical research and medical affairs (not as racy as it sounds!). She has had a fantastic career but continued education as and when she could and even got a BA with the Open University! She said that Liverpool was a wonderful University for student development - she is so pleased that she was there.

Farouk Chaudhry (MSc 1978) has recently retired from the Arab Banking Corporation in Bahrain where he was Vice President, Group IT Planning & Project Management after 15 years.

Dr David Canter (MBChB 1978) after a hard won FRCS, went on to a 25 year career in pharmaceutical R&D leading the Lipitor project to its first approvals eventually becoming the Senior VP of Pfizer’s Michigan R&D labs. After the labs closed in 2008 he spent six months in Rwanda with the access project moving to the William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where,  for the past five years, has been with the leading the rebirth of the old Pfizer labs now owned by the university and home to 2,500 researchers.


Malcolm John Hawkesford (BSc Hons Botany 1979) was recently appointed Head of the Plant Biology and Crop Science department at Rothamsted Research in Harpenden. His research projects are on wheat genetic improvement and high throughput field phenotyping systems.

Miles Arnot (BCom 1979) is now happily retired and living in Chester after working for Price Waterhouse and then Shell. He still remembers university days, in particular, the Gilbert and Sullivan Society.

Dr Maurice Anthony Smith (MBChB 1979) remains active in hospital geriatric medicine in London recently taking up part time duties. He holds senior academic appointments in his local trust as well as at the Barts and London Medical School. He is Site Director for the American University of the Caribbean Medical School and directs a Management and Leadership course for senior medical trainees. In his spare time he watches cricket at Lords and is a new grandparent. He visits Liverpool every three weeks for family and sentimental reasons and he and wife Marilyn enjoyed the 35th year reunion last year.