Lives of the fellows

Kenneth Harry Tallerman

b.3 November 1894 d.25 October 1981
MC(1917) MRCS LRCP(1921) MB BChir Cantab(1922) MRCP(1923) MA MD(1925) FRCP(1936)

Kenneth Tallerman was educated at Charterhouse School and commenced his medical studies at Cambridge and St Thomas’s Hospital Medical School. With the outbreak of the first world war, his medical studies were interrupted and he joined the Friends’ Ambulance Unit, in which he served until September 1915. He was then commissioned in the Royal Artillery and was awarded the Military Cross in 1917.

After the war he resumed his medical studies, qualifying with the conjoint diploma in 1921 and graduated MB BChir the following year. He held several junior appointments at St Thomas’s Hospital and obtained the MRCP in 1923. He then embarked on a career in paediatrics, spending two years at the Institute of Paediatrics in Washington and six months as a house physician at the Hospital for Sick Children, Great Ormond Street. His association with the London Hospital started with a registrarship in 1926, followed by his appointment to the consultant staff in 1931. He held other consultant appointments at Paddington Green Children’s Hospital, the Westminster Children’s Hospital, Harrow Hospital and St Margaret’s Hospital, Epping, over the years, but his first love and his greatest interest was the London. He was elected to the fellowship in 1936.

He served his country for a second time, in the RAMC as a medical specialist from 1941 to 1944, and returned to the London as head of the children’s department, from which he retired in 1959.

Kenneth Tallerman was an eminent figure in British paediatrics. He was president of the section of paediatrics of the Royal Society of Medicine in 1950-1951, and was elected president of the British Paediatric Association in 1957. His special interest was infant nutrition, and he published several articles on this subject.

He was very happily married and his wife, Alice (née Rose), was a successful consultant anaesthetist. It was sad that in the year of his retirement she was stricken with a fatal disease. However, a few years later he married Mrs Florence Keeble, and was able to enjoy a long and peaceful retirement in his charming old house in the depths of the Essex countryside. Kenneth never had children of his own but in a long career in paediatrics, lasting thirty three years, he had very many children as his patients and he was always proud of the fact that many of these patients brought their own children to him as the years went by.

Those who worked with and for Kenneth Tallerman at the London were always impressed by his consideration for his juniors. He had a love of dogs, gardening, good food and good wine. He used to bring his dog to the London in his car, and at the end of his ward rounds the whole firm would proceed with Kenneth to the car park where the said dog was released for a few minutes, before its master returned to the staff room for tea.

ADM Jackson

[Brit.med.J., 1981, 283, 1269; London Hosp. Gazette, Dec 1959, 62(5)]

(Volume VII, page 567)

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