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I held the first Chair of Inorganic Chemistry in the UK


The expansion of sciences at Newcastle University
Norman Greenwood Scientist
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Now Newcastle was, like Nottingham, attached at that time to another university; it was attached to Durham University which was, I think, the fourth university to be founded in England. There were Oxford and Cambridge, then University College London and, virtually simultaneously, Durham University started. But the science and medicine side of Durham was carried out at King’s College in Newcastle and it became, over the years, almost a case of the tail wagging the dog because Newcastle became much larger than Durham and had the medical school and had science and engineering. Whereas Durham, although it had some science, certainly, and some distinguished science, was concentrating more on the arts and other subjects.

Norman Greenwood (1925-2012) was born in Australia and graduated from Melbourne University before going to Cambridge. His wide-ranging research in inorganic and structural chemistry made major advances in the chemistry of boron hydrides and other main-group element compounds. He also pioneered the application of Mössbauer spectroscopy to problems in chemistry. He was a prolific writer and inspirational lecturer on chemical and educational themes, and held numerous visiting professorships throughout the world.

Listeners: Brian Johnson

Professor Brian FG Johnson FRS, FRSE, FRS Chem, FAcad Eu, FAS. Professor of Inorganic Chemistry University of Edinburgh 1991-1995, Professor of Inorganic Chemistry University of Cambridge 1995-2005, Master Fitzwilliam College Cambridge 1999-2005. Research interests include studies of transition metal carbonyls, organometallic chemistry, nano- particles and homogeneous catalysis. Professor Johnson is the author of over 1000 research articles and papers.

Tags: Newcastle University, Nottingham University, Durham University, Oxford University, Cambridge University, University College London, King's College, Newcastle

Duration: 1 minute

Date story recorded: May 2011

Date story went live: 25 November 2011