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Chris Clegg

Dr Ian Hampton

Colleagues will be sorry to learn of the death, on 10 March 2018, of Dr Ian Hampton, former Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physiology.  Former colleagues have contributed the following tribute.

Ian was a graduate of London University.  He worked in the Division of Human Physiology, National Institute for Medical Research, London with Griffith Pugh, the physiologist who researched the problems of survival in cold temperatures at high altitude, and contributed enormously to the success of the 1952 ascent of Everest.  Following that event, Ian became very interested in the role that physiology had played in survival in hostile environments.  Ian spent several years with the British Antarctic Survey, researching the physiological problems of life in cold environments.   During his years in the Antarctic he fell into a crevasse and was lucky to survive, as the odds were severely against him.  On his return to the UK, it became clear to him that the MRC would probably not continue this type of research indefinitely.  An opportunity arose in the University of Hawaii, where he stayed for about 5 years and studied thermoregulation in whales and dolphins.  

He came to Leeds as a Lecturer in 1972 and was appointed Senior Lecturer by Professor   G R Hervey in 1977.  Romaine had links with the Institute of Naval Medicine at Gosport, and they had common interests in the problems of survival in cold water.  There began a series of collaborations on the effects of cold water, wind and other factors on the body, and the factors that would influence survival at sea.   One important collaborator was Frank Golden, and together they published work on the factors that may stabilise body temperature in that hostile environment. 

Ian was a conscientious teacher and ran field courses for honours students who wanted to participate in the research at Gosport.  Students were introduced to research on humans (i.e. themselves) immersed in cold water at various wind speeds and different degrees of swell, wearing various attachments used to monitor body temperature, and cardiovascular and respiratory changes.  He also took part in evaluating some types of clothing that might minimise the heat loss in that environment.

Ian took a sabbatical in the early 1980s and returned to the Antarctic as part of a team with Professor Rainer Goldsmith.   While he was away Marjory broke her leg, but persuaded Ian to finish his research, with several departmental members helping out as much as they could in the circumstances.  One lasting memory of Ian was in TV documentary of the expedition; he could be seen with a beard, sitting in a corner clearly suffering from cold; life in the Antarctic was tough.   Friends will also remember an enormous canvas on the wall of their home in Bramhope depicting Hawaiian natives paddling a canoe in clear blue waters.

His wife, Marjory, died two years ago, and sadly their son, Piers, had died some years earlier.  Ian is survived by his daughter Delyth and her family.

A celebration of his life will be held at 3.00pm on Friday 6 April at Lawnswood Crematorium, Otley Road, Adel, LS16 8AA, on which day the flag on the Parkinson Building will be flown at half-mast in his memory.