Lives of the fellows

Anthony Hordern

b.1 September 1925 d.3 July 2016
MB ChB Edin(1947) DPM(1952) MRCP(1955) MD(1963) MRCP Edin(1964) FRCP Edin(1968) FRCPsych(1972) FRCP(1974)

Anthony Hordern was a consultant psychiatrist at King’s College Hospital, London, from 1965 to 1976, and a recognised teacher of psychological medicine in the University of London. He was born in Bridlington, Yorkshire, the son of Charles Hordern, a bank cashier, and Dorothy Hordern née Scanlon, the daughter of a silk dyer. He was educated at Bridlington School and then studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh, graduating MB ChB at the age of 21 in 1947.

Hordern worked in house jobs in the north of England, where he was also an assistant in general practice, until he became a medical officer in the Royal Air Force, serving in Scotland and in West Germany. He began his psychiatric career in London in April 1951 and underwent postgraduate training there and in Newcastle upon Tyne. He gained his diploma in psychological medicine in 1952.

In 1956, Hordern was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to travel to the United States. He taught clinical psychiatry at the psychiatric institute of the University of Maryland at Baltimore for two years and was subsequently appointed a visiting scientist at the National Institute of Mental Health’s clinical neuropharmacology research center, which was located at St Elizabeth’s Hospital, Washington, DC. Between 1960 and 1962, he was employed as a consultant psychiatrist to the Mental Health Research Institute at Parkville, Victoria, Australia. From 1963 to 1965, Hordern was chief of research in the State of California’s Department of Mental Hygiene at Sacramento.

In 1965 he returned to London, as a consultant psychiatrist at King’s College Hospital. He was also an examiner for the Royal College of Physicians, a consultant psychiatrist to the War Pensioners’ Welfare Service for London north region, and had a private psychiatric practice at 52 Harley Street, London. In 1974, he was elected as a member of the Collegium Internationale Neuro-Psychopharmacologicum and, with David Wheatley, head of the General Practitioner Research Group, and later, with seven other colleagues, founded the British Academy of Psychopharmacology, which subsequently became the British Association for Psychopharmacology. He was a fellow of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of Edinburgh and of London, and of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

Hordern was the author of three books – Depressive states: a pharmacotherapeutic study (Springfield, Illinois, Thomas, 1965), Legal abortion: the English experience (London, Pergamon, 1971) and Tranquillity denied: stress and its impact today (Adelaide, Rigby, 1976). He also wrote and participated in three medical films – The black cloud: a study of depression (1969); Tranquillity denied (1973) and A world unseen (1975). In addition, alone or in collaboration, Hordern contributed chapters to various books, as well as authoring approximately 60 scientific articles dealing with chemical abreaction, psychotherapy, the management of chronic schizophrenia, research methodology, the treatment of depression, psychiatric diagnosis, conception control, the history of psychiatry, urban problems, clinical aspects of stress and psychiatric illness following injuries of the head and neck.

In 1967, two years after returning to London, he married his exquisite wife, Anthea Margaret Waind, then aged 23. She gave birth to Antonia, their only child, in 1984, but sadly died from complications of breast cancer in March 2002.

Above all, Anthony Hordern was a very special man, brilliant, kind and the quintessential gentleman.

Antonia Karlsson

(Volume XII, page web)

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