Elected: 1996
Discipline: Unspecified at this time
Baron Frederick Sydney Dainton of Hallam Moors HonFRSE
There can be few people who have had such a distinguished career in teaching, research and administration as Fred Dainton, culminating in his elevation to the peerage in 1986 and his appointment in 1978 as Chancellor of the University of his native Sheffield, an office which he filled with great distinction and which gave him more pleasure than any other of a long series of high-level appointments. A physical chemist of international renown, with more than 260 publications in the scientific journals, he was a man held in wide affection and respect.

His father, George Whalley Dainton, was married first to Sarah Bottrill who died after the birth of her fifth child, and then to her sister Mary Jane who bore him another four children of whom Fred was the last. In his autobiography Fred tells us that his father had a secret admiration for Frederick the Great, and that this is how he came by his first name. We may see in this a prophetic choice! His father was born in 1857, too early to have received much formal education and to the end of his days could scarcely read or write, but as a highly skilled stonemason taught himself to draw plans that other men could use; and as Clerk of Works was employed by many well known architects. He had an intense interest in all that went on in the world and from an early age Fred spent many hours reading to his father, followed by discussion. Thus, long before Oxford, he was exposed to the tutorial system, and his later extraordinary ability to read, digest and summarise large amounts of information in clear and concise form undoubtedly stemmed from this early discipline.

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