Tributes are paid to community champion
TRIBUTES have been paid following the death of Geoffrey Dowrick who worked tirelessly in the community for more than a decade.
Born and educated in Plymouth, he discovered biology as a student and following his school’s evacuation to Penzance during the Blitz, he went to study Botany at University College, Exeter.
There he was awarded his PhD, working on chromo- some make-up in the breeding of chrysanthemums.
He researched and taught in Ghana before returning to England to undertake full-time research, and met his future wife Pamela.
After they married he spent a year on a Canadian Government funded research post in Ottawa before returning as senior lecturer in plant genetics at Wye College, and later Reader in the Biological sciences Department at Wye.
While his family was growing up he became actively involved in the local community.
Starting with umpiring student cricket matches and refereeing for the Kent RFU, he then joined the Wye Parochial Church Council and later became chairman. He was also elected as an Independent for Ashford Rural District council.
Mr Dowrick also gave his time to work with the local Samaritans branch.
In 1971 he was appointed principal at Seale-Hayne Agricultural College, Devon, and worked there for 18 years before joining Plymouth University as Assistant Director and secretary to the Board.
In 1990 he received an OBE for his work in Agricultural Education.
He retired in 1991 spending some time in Wye. He enjoyed painting, and finally moved to Tonbridge where he died aged 80 leaving his wife and two daughters Susan and Sally.