Elected: 1971
Discipline: Private Sector Leadership
Sir Frederick George Thomas Holliday CBE FRSE
When Fred Holliday started his career as a herring biologist in 1956 no one could have predicted that he would become Vice-Chancellor of Durham University, a prominent business man and one of the ‘great and the good’!

Born on the 22nd of September in 1935, he was educated at Bromsgrove County High School, and then went up to Sheffield University where, in 1956, he was awarded first class honours in zoology. Apparently he was attracted there by the presence of the Nobel prize-winner and biochemist, Hans Krebs – a very mature judgement for a school leaver!

He then became a Development Commission fisheries research student for two years (in lieu of National Service) before being appointed as a Scientific Officer in the Marine Laboratory in Aberdeen. This laboratory was run by the Scottish Home Department in Edinburgh and had, as its main function, the monitoring of commercial fish stocks in the seas around Scotland. He joined the herring group at the laboratory in 1958. At that time research on the herring followed a conventional ‘top-down’ approach in which herring samples were taken from commercial catches and from research vessels. Changes in year-class strength were followed from year-to-year to assess fishing mortality rates and there was an extensive fish tagging programme. Coupled with fishery statistics, the aim was to assess optimum rates of capture, to check for overfishing and to predict the yield of the fishery in subsequent years. Read full obituary