Geoffrey Wilson

Colleagues will be sorry to learn of the death, on 20 April 2023, of Geoffrey Wilson former Chief Planning Officer, at the age of 101.

In 1938 he entered the University of Leeds on a scholarship aged 16 and in 1940 he graduated with First Class Honours in Engineering, beginning a PhD programme which was cut short by WW2. Instead he graduated with a MSc First Class in Engineering in 1942 and moved to London where he worked throughout the War. 

In 1946 he returned to Leeds, lecturing in the new Department of Civil Engineering where he designed the first course in Architectural Engineering which he was delighted to find is now considered an important element of the syllabus. During the War he had studied architecture and qualified in 1952, whereupon he was persuaded to join the University’s new Department of Planning as its Chief Planning Officer. He oversaw the expansion of the University in terms of buildings – obtaining land, planning permissions, vetting architecturally sound plans, and repurposing existing buildings.  

Geoffrey retired in 1979 and began to learn the art of watercolour painting. In 1992 he and his wife emigrated to the Chicago area to be with their growing family.  There his new career as a watercolourist flourished and he was able to both sell his paintings and teach. He was also able to write his memoirs, entitled “Never a Dull Moment”, in which his inimitable voice comes through.

The memorial Service has been held.

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