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. He immediately took a radiolocation course and worked for some time in the Orkneys as a civilian Radio Officer in the Ministry of Supply before being commissioned directly into RAOC and from thence into REME. In 1944 he left the Orkneys, having been in command of the main REME Workshop there with the rank of Captain, to join the Anti-Aircraft Command and work on the modification of existing radar equipment for the detection of V2s. When the V2 attack declined he was transferred to SHAEF and was involved with a unit set up to investigate German research stations as they were captured. Thus it was not until he was demobilized in the late summer of 1945 that he was finally able to begin his academic career.
Read full obituary