Lives of the fellows

Cedric Kenneth Hirson

b.14 October 1918 d.12 September 1971
MRCS LRCP(1941) MRCP(1948) FRCP(1969)

Cedric Kenneth Hirson was born in Manchester, the son of Bernard Hirson, a general practitioner, and his wife Rose Ada, daughter of Robert Bradshaw, a dental surgeon. He was educated at Manchester Grammar School and received his medical education at Manchester Royal Infirmary, qualifying MRCS LRCP in 1941. During the second world war he served with the RAMC as a regimental medical officer in the Mediterranean theatre and North Africa. It was during this time that he met his wife, Joan Francis, daughter of Mark Castle, an Australian sheep farmer. They had two children, a son and a daughter.

After demobolization in 1946 he was appointed medical registrar at Salford Royal Hospital and obtained the MRCP in 1948. He subsequently became senior registrar at the West Herts Hospital and the Royal Northern Hospital, and in 1953 was appointed senior medical registrar at the St Helier Hospital. It was nearly twelve years before he obtained a consultant post, at the same hospital, in 1965, and at that time he claimed to be the most senior of all senior registrars in the country. He surely deserved consultant status but by this time all consultant advisory appointments committees included a university assessor who was disposed to look coldly on any candidate without the appropriate letters. Hirson served the St Helier Hospital well and played a large part in founding the St Helier Postgraduate Medical Centre. He was elected FRCP in 1969.

Hirson was the third generation of Jewish immigrants, a prodigious reader with a retentive memory, and an excellent teacher. He was without worldly ambition and took a defensive pride in his unorganized affairs. He was devoted to his patients and especially to teaching his juniors, gaining great affection and respect in this small group. A radical by temperament, he had profound humanity and a keen perception of the many problems which oppress people in illness and adversity.

J Bishop Harman
Sir Gordon Wolstenholme

[, 1971, 4, 53, 369; Lancet, 1971, 2, 715, 828]

(Volume VI, page 245)

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