OBITUARY: Stuart Marshall-Clarke

Professor Chris Sanderson, Head of Institute of Translational Medicine, pays tribute:

“It is with great sadness that I have to inform you that our old colleague Stuart Marshall-Clarke passed away last week. Stuart retired from the University in September 2016, but was diagnosed with cancer in December 2018, unfortunately after several rounds of therapy Stuart passed away in the Royal in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Stuart was a larger than life character who worked in the Anatomy and Physiology Departments for many years. During his time in the Faculty Stuart made significant contributions to research and to the very successful Anatomy undergraduate degree course. As many of you would know, his contributions to Senate meetings were legendary, and they are greatly missed.

Steve Edwards notes: ‘When the School of Life Sciences first formed in 2010, and I was putting together my management team, one of the first names on my list was Stuart. I had first come across Stuart when sitting of the University Academic Standards Sub-Committee and was also aware of his excellent research in Immunology.

As he was originally based in the Faculty of Medicine, I thought this his skills-set and experience would be invaluable for the challenges that we faced in setting up the cross-disciplinary School. Stuart was a fantastic member of the team and played a major role in the curriculum review that we delivered a few years later.

Stuart had strong views and opinions (for which he was famous!) but was always open to new ideas and change if these were for the benefit of the student experience. He was totally reliable and dependable, and I greatly valued his support and wise guidance. His contribution to the School, particularly in those early days, and his input into the curriculum, both for Life Sciences and more widely across the University via his work on quality control, is long-lasting.’

Of his work on Faculty Academic Standards Quality Committee (FASQC), Callum Youngson observes: ‘It is fair to say that people who submitted programmes for approval to FASQC, often did so in the hope that Stuart was not on the review panel of that programme, especially if they knew there were any weaknesses in the submission.

Stuart was formidable in his upholding of quality on the committee, both from an academic viewpoint but also with an incisive focus on the students’ perspective. His integrity shone through with a refusal to compromise on standards and an enjoyment of robust academic debate, informed by experience and deep knowledge of the literature (often more than the programme authors).

However, this was always a positive debate and one underpinned with desert-dry, strong, good humour. The programmes approved subsequently were always much improved by Stuart’s contributions and he improved the education of many thousands of Liverpool graduates in the process, without them ever knowing. Their degrees are part of Stuart’s legacy.

For those staff who worked with Stuart and may wish to attend the funeral service, his son has provided the following information.

The Funeral Service will take place at 2.00pm on Monday 9th March at Greenacres Woodland Burial site just outside of Rainford (address : GreenAcres Rainford, Blindfoot Road, Rainford, St Helens Merseyside WA11 7HX).

After the ceremony there will be a burial service for family members only, and there will be tea and coffee available for other attendees. Afterwards everyone is invited to Rainford Labour club for a drink in his honour. The address is 2 Damson Grove, Rainford, WA11 8GG.

Stuart did not want any flowers but if anyone wishes to make a donation to his chosen charity – Medecins San Frontieres – there will be a box at Greenacres.