In Memoriam – Emeritus Professors Prothero and Semple

The University regrets to report the deaths of the following former members of staff:

Emeritus Professor Ralph Mansell Prothero, who worked in the Department of Geography from 1955 until 1989.

His first university post was in Edinburgh, then as Fellow of the West African Institute of Social and Economic Research and Department of Geography in the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, joining this University in 1955.

The Department have sent the following tribute:

Professor Prothero was a specialist in population and medical geography, working as a consultant to the World Health Organisation and other international bodies – particularly in tropical Africa. His Migrants and Malaria (1965) is of considerable significance among many publications on the socio-demographic aspects of malaria. During his career he held visiting appointments in the USA, Israel and Australia, and was active in representing the Department of Geography externally, especially with the Royal Geographical Society, the Institute of British Geographers, and the Population Geography Commission of the International Geographical Union. He was awarded a personal chair in 1977.

Emeritus Professor Andrew Best Semple, who was Professor of Public Health 1953-1977 and Liverpool’s Medical Officer of Health 1953-1974. He was 101.

He was one of Britain’s great 20th-century city medical officers of health and under his guidance Liverpool tackled some of the persistent problems of infectious diseases, slum housing and air pollution that were a result of its rapid and often unplanned 19th-century growth.

In 1953 he took on responsibility for the city of Liverpool as it entered it post war economic decline with persistently high rates of infectious diseases such as tuberculosis. He devised a mass x-ray campaign requisitioning mobile x-ray vans from around Britain and urged every Liverpool resident to attend for a chest x-ray to uncover asymptomatic tuberculosis cases.

To view his full obituary in the Guardian, visit:

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