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Stuart Simpson


Stuart Simpson — 1934-2009

 

Stuart Simpson died on 14th August 2009 after a courageous fight against cancer.  Stuart was born and brought up in Lancashire and his first professional employment was with the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority at their Springfields plant near Preston.  Here, Stuart worked in the Research Laboratories and gave technical assistance to a team of metallurgists developing new techniques for the welding of end caps on nuclear fuel elements.  He was highly appreciated for his ability and input to the team effort.

In 1964 Stuart joined a small team in the RF Group of PS Division set up to construct a full aperture kicker using surplus cavity ferrite rings.  This project was completed but abandoned before serious use because of incompatibility with PS vacuum requirements.  Despite this disappointment the kicker team started a new project in the Magnet Group which was commissioned in the PS in December 1973.  This kicker is still in daily use and has performed all the PS fast extractions for 35 years.  Stuart was responsible for the building, testing, installation and subsequent maintenance of many of its key components; its success stands as the best possible testimony to his devotion to his work.  Subsequently Stuart participated in innumerable kicker projects for the rings which have come, and sometimes since gone, in the PS complex.  Throughout his CERN career spanning of 30 years Stuart always kept the same enthusiasm and motivation that he came with in 1964 and he was a constant source of encouragement to all who worked with him.

On arrival in 1964 Stuart was plunged into a largely French speaking environment.  It was not easy for him as he came with very little French.  As in all other things Stuart learned quickly.  So quickly, in fact, that he changed a few of the accepted rules of the French language to generate a "Franglais à la Simpson" which could be amusing and a little disconcerting to those who had not heard it before.  But it worked, and Stuart was never lost for words and only rarely misunderstood.

Stuart worked hard but he also played hard.  In his youth he played football at professional league level.  Within a few months of coming to CERN he had skis on his feet for the first time and soon was a black piste skier.  He was also an accomplished ten pin bowler but above all else a stalwart member of the CERN cricket team.  Stuart was a left arm bowler, a right-handed batsman and a superb ambidextrous fielder.  He topped both the batting and bowling averages a number of years running.

Stuart is survived by his wife Beryl and sons Andrew and Mark.  We extend to them our deepest sympathy in these difficult times through which they have to pass.

His ex-colleagues, fellow cricketers and friends