Lives of the fellows

Reginald St Alban Heathcote

b.17 June 1888 d.19 May 1951
MA Oxon(1911) BM BCh Oxon(1913) DM Oxon(1919) DSc Oxon(1922) MRCP(1932) FRCP(1937)

Reginald Heathcote was born in 1888, the youngest son of the Rev. G. Vyvyan Heathcote, of West Deeping, Lincolnshire, and his wife, the former Mary Henrietta Perceval. He was educated at Winchester and New College, Oxford, obtaining open scholarships to each, and went to University College Hospital, London, where he was the first holder of the Theodore Williams scholarship, qualifying in 1913. He served in the field in the R.A.M.C, from 1914 to 1917 and then in the R.N.Y.R. to the end of the War.

After the War he returned to J. A. Gunn’s department at Oxford, where he worked until 1922 when he was appointed to the new chair of pharmacology at Cairo. In his work there he saw his main function as the development of the department to produce successors from the student body. In Cairo he took a prominent part in the life of the English community and in the affairs of the University, and delighted in the antiquities of Egypt of which he had remarkable photographic records, which he described with great facility and pleasure. For his work for the University he was awarded the Order of the Nile (1932).

In 1933 he was appointed independent lecturer, and later professor of pharmacology in the University of Wales. At Cardiff he was again faced with the task of building up a new department and, despite difficulties of budget and the Second World War, continued to work hard, developing relationships with the School of Pharmacy and with clinical departments.

Heathcote was an urbane, cultured man, with an extraordinary memory, a great knowledge of academic procedure, of antiques, art and history, and with skill as a worker in wood and metal. His knowledge of claret and French cooking was epicurean. His amiable wit and charm were perhaps most evident in discussions of the French table. In 1913 he married Viola, youngest daughter of Osbert Salvin, F.R.S. They had one son. His second marriage, in 1948, was to Amy, youngest daughter of R. G. Howson, of Stoke-on-Trent.

Richard R Trail

[Brit.med.J., 1951, 1, 1267; Lancet, 1951, 1, 1234-5.]

(Volume V, page 182)

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