Posted: by Verity Hilton in UALL News

Remembering Angus Hawkins

Remembering Angus Hawkins

It is with deep regret that UALL announces the death of our former colleague, friend and Executive Committee member, Professor Angus Hawkins of Oxford University. Angus died suddenly of a heart attack over Christmas and colleagues and friends are devastated. He was only 67 and had recently returned from a sabbatical. The last time we saw Angus was online at the Association’s AGM in early December. 

Angus’ colleagues at Oxford, including Professor Jonathan Michie the current UALL Chair, have provided a link to their tribute to Angus. This outlines his outstanding career and contribution to education and includes tributes from the colleagues he worked with:

On behalf of UALL, and having worked alongside Angus for many years, I want to pay tribute to the enormous contribution that Angus made to the Association. He was an active member of UALL and served on the UALL Executive for many years. In 2016 he hosted the highly successful and convivial Annual UALL Conference. Angus was a great listener. When he spoke, everyone listened and his comments were insightful and based on decades of experience of working in adult learning. His qualities are evidenced in the search through the UALL photographic records. The photos we have on file of Angus show him as someone who stood back and engaged on a one-one basis with colleagues from around the world. Most of our images show him in deep discussions with people about their work and virtually all show him facing away from the camera. The image of Angus is from the UALL Conference in 2018 hosted by Cambridge University standing with Executive colleagues and alongside Peter Neil, the then UALL Chair. The following is a collection of tributes from colleagues who worked closely with Angus:

I got to know Angus well when we organised the UALL conference at Oxford.  He encouraged UALL to reach out internationally and always made our visitors most welcome. A true English gentleman who will be sadly missed. Dr Rob Mark, University of Glasgow

Angus was a wonderful colleague in so many ways; he will be missed terribly all round. The Reverend Canon Professor Peter Neil, Vice Chancellor Bishop Grosseteste University, previous UALL Chair

The death of Angus Hawkins is a grievous loss to friends, colleagues and to the academic continuing education community. Angus was a true inheritor of what used to be called the ‘Great Tradition’ in university adult education: he was a consummate scholar in his discipline of political history, and also a dedicated educator directing programmes which enabled significant personal learning for thousands of adults. His great distinction as a scholar did not in any way divert his dedication to inclusive lifelong learning. He and I were members of the Executive of the Universities Association for Lifelong Learning, and his commitment to the widening participation work of the Association was always evident. Angus was an excellent friend and delightful companion, with whom I shared many hours of conversation ranging from our shared scholarly interests to mischievous humour. In our profession of university adult educators there is a long history of individuality and character; Angus most certainly lived up to this tradition. Professor Bill Jones, former UALL Trustee

The sad news of Angus' death has come as a huge shock.  I know when we last spoke, Angus was looking forward to his retirement. Over the years, I got to know Angus very well and particularly when we held our 2016 Annual Conference at Rewley House.  Angus took a close interest in the preparations for the Conference and was extraordinarily generous with his time and the Rewley House resources, which contributed greatly to the success of our Conference. Yesterday I had a long telephone conversation with Angus' old boss, Geoffrey Thomas. We reminisced happily about Angus - Geoffrey and his other Oxford colleagues, miss him greatly. Lucy Bate, retired UALL Administrator

Angus was a great colleague, who made a valuable and sustained contribution to the work of UALL. Professor Jackie Dunne, Vice Chancellor, Newman University and former UALL Secretary

I always remember Angus as such a positive and supportive colleague.... a true ambassador for life long learning .... especially when his university hosted the UALL conference in Oxford... I feel so sad. Dr Nadira Mirza, former UALL Treasurer

Angus was a warm, intelligent and thoughtful friend and colleague.  As well as his high level of commitment to his academic role, he was a talented musician, and he loved life.  It is so sad that he did not live to enjoy his expected longevity, but it is certainly true to say that he had a life well lived. And he will be greatly missed. Pauline McManus, Warwick University


Prepared by Dr Mary Mahoney, UALL Trustee/Secretary 

Verity Hilton

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Verity Hilton
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