Allan Arnold -
To career, is to fall headlong....
assistant in Geology at Portsmouth Polytechnic from 1967 -1971, visited
Greenland 1968 with BJW, worked on ultramafic rocks from Frederikshaab district
- Igaussaq area, did Master's thesis on 'Carbonatite Lamprophyres' from the same
area, originally described by BJW.
worked as a research assistant for Stuart Agrell and Jim Long at Dept. of
Mineralogy & Petrology in Cambridge, working on lunar rocks from Apollo 14,
visited E.Greenland with Aberdeen University expedition to Lilloise intrusion
-with Peter Brown, Ian Parsons, Jack Soper et al
set up microprobe laboratory for Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa,
with Prof. Hugh Eales.
ran a microprobe laboratory for the University of Natal in Durban, South Africa
became a motor dealer in Pinetown, near Durban.
having lost my shirt (and underpants!) joined a chemical company specialising in
Industrial water treatment as a technical salesman based in Pinetown.
bought new underpants...ran an Industrial water treatment consultancy in KwaZulu
ran a microprobe laboratory for the University of the Witwatersrand in
Brian Walton once again after almost 30 years when he visited Wits July 2004.
got retrenched, started microprobe facility for Moruo Development Corporation on
the West Rand; ongoing.....
Hi Brian & Joyce,
a few lines to keep up to date. In June I always think of Brian as this
was the month you attended the conference at Wits in '04....
I am now working as an R&D Consultant with the Pratley Group
in Krugersdorp - all our microprobes are there and Pratley's have
bought 3 scanning electron microscopes: the one we collected in
Grahamstown, the one we used to use at Moruo Minerals, and another from
a company in North Carolina! So we are quite busy these days.
I hope you are both still well, maybe we'll be in UK again in the future and definitely pass through Bosham
Love & best wishes from Theone, Allan, Angela, Tyler, the cat & the dog.15.10.2015
Roger, I can remember John Lovell's name but not the face..............memory
fade I guess. But I think the red-haired technician he remembers was Yvonne
Melia, daughter of Jimmy Melia who played professional soccer for Southampton.
They stayed in Cosham & Yvonne sometimes traveled with me to work at the
Geology huts in Burnaby Road.
believe you are now into the 80's - many congratulations to you & to Joyce.
wishes to you both,
Michael Scott -
1 Date: 23.11.05
Michael graduated as a mature student.
Following the degree he completed a teacher training course for one year and
then spent the remainder of his working life working at Oak Park School on
the Leigh Park Estate, Havant. It was a very difficult school and in
those days there were many new initiatives to make science more accessible
to the less able. Michael really worked hard at making science
understandable to all. Basic geology was included in these new
courses. Sadly, Michael died in 2003.
Charlie Jamieson - 1
date sent: 20.05.07
just found this site (don't ask how) I am instantly transported back to
a series of huts on Burnaby Road and a lot of very fond memories. For
the record, after leaving Portsmouth I did a PGCE at Lancaster and
became one of the very few people to have a teaching qualification in
Geology and Geography. Marriage and experiences in a girls grammar
school in St Helens plus a stint as a GCSE senior examiner and
moderator led to 32 years in three sixth form colleges on Teesside
finally retiring in 2006 as manager of the Earth Sciences department
(Geography, Geology and Environmental Science at Prior Pursglove
Give my regards to Mike Ryan and any others. I'll be in Portsmouth at the end of June/early July this year. Who knows?
A.G. "Charlie" Jamieson PCT 1965-1968
Roger MacCallum -
After graduating I spent the customary 6 months or so looking for a job.
Then, sometime early in 1969 I got offered a job back at Portsmouth in the
Geology Dept as Curator, followed a week later by an offer of a job from BP to
work in the Oil Industry in Alaska. Having already accepted the first, and being
a bit naive in those days, I didn’t feel I could bin the first and take the
second. I often wondered about that in subsequent years....At Portsmouth I didn’t
really take full advantage of things and should have bashed the research better
than I did and got some stuff published or submitted. But I was given a
wonderful opportunity there to develop lecturing skills, which I did take full
advantage of and loved it, eventually being employed as part time lecturer. I
also did some lecturing to ‘A’ Level students at Highbury Tech. Chickens
came home to roost however, when, having applied for an L1 at Portsmouth,
Griffin, head of Chemistry came to see me the day after the interviews and told
me I’d done a "better effing job of the interview than the other baggars"
but the guy they gave it to had much stronger research. That was the point at
which I decided I’d better get out and move on as I was going to get nowhere
in academic circles.
So in response I started looking for other jobs, eventually turning up a job
as a mining geologist with the NCB in Wales. So I left Portsmouth in the summer
of 1975 – exactly 30 years ago.It must be said that working as a geologist in
the coal mining industry – particularly open pit mining must have been one of
the most rewarding geology jobs in industry that could be found anywhere. It
provided the opportunity to carry out original subsurface investigations
supervising drilling rigs and carrying out geophysical logging and the
interpretation of the subsurface geology from the data gathered and evaluation
of the minerals found. It encompassed structural geology, stratigraphy,
sedimentology, hydrogeology, geophysics, and geotechnics. I loved it –
particularly the production of subsurface geology maps from borehole and
geophysical data and the quantification of minerals. The NCB were at the
forefront of computer technology for such purposes and we eventually ended up
with computer systems which enabled the generation of 3 dimensional subsurface
structural models from borehole data. For the likes of me, interpretation of the
complex geological structures in the South Wales Coalfield was a delight.
I spent most of my time in the NCB in Regional HQ preparing the geological
maps, sections, plans, reports and quantities which formed the basis of mining
contracts.I got reasonably rapid promotion, eventually becoming Regional
Computation Geologist in charge of a team of geologists. This was as high as one
could go in the NCB whilst still being ‘hands on’ with the technical stuff.
I neither wanted or ever applied for higher management jobs where one became a
‘paper shuffler’. The post disappeared in one of the many NCB ‘reorganisations’.
I have to admit I really missed working with students. I found it most
rewarding for example to show students how to do Bennison maps, how to log a
rock sequence in the field, or the mysteries of sedimentary rocks under the
microscope. Just some of the things I had done at Portsmouth.So, when in the
early 1980s, the Dept of Mineral Exploitation at Cardiff University asked if
someone could give a couple of lectures to students on techniques in the coal
mining industry I jumped at the chance. (Interestingly, most of the people I
worked with, had the horrors at doing such a thing!) I gradually built this up
from a couple of ‘one off’ lectures to a full course in exploration,
subsurface mapping, geophysics, and evaluation of reserves, in Coal Measures
strata to Undergraduate students. So my lectures must have gone down ok.
Eventually, I was given an Honorary lectureship in the University of Wales in
recognition of my efforts. The last lectures I gave at Cardiff were to classes
of MSc students in Mineral Evaluation. This course eventually wound up through
lack of (overseas) students.
My dealings at Cardiff were mainly with Dr AE Annels. Mainly through his
efforts of persuasion I gave a lecture at an International Symposium on mineral
evaluation on wireline geophysics. The Proceedings were published so I had my
name in print (at last!) tagged to paper on geophysics. If, in 1968 when Pete
Jones was teaching us the basics of geophysics, someone had predicted that one
day I’d have my name in print, attached to a paper on geophysics, both he and
I would have fallen down laughing and retired to the pub for a calming drink!
Alwyn Annels also asked me to contribute to a book he was writing on mineral
deposit evaluation. This I duly did and it appears under the Case Histories
section of the book. Material like this becomes so out of date so quickly that I
did a revision a few years later for the second printing/edition.
In 1994 the Government of the day decided to ‘privatise’ the mining
industry. It was obvious to all that this was just a blind to get rid of it
since they had put in place enough gas fired power stations to take over from
coal. It was a mystery to all of us in the industry why precious gas reserves
should be used to generate electricity. So thousands of us, including most of
the geologists, were simply made redundant. When I joined the industry in 1975
there were over 60 collieries and over 20 open pit mines working in South Wales.
Now there is one colliery and I think 3 open pit sites.
In 1995 I did get a job with a successor company for a short while and have
worked for them since on a consultancy basis from time to time. Otherwise I have
simply done odd consultancy jobs when asked – from quarry design to
supervision of drilling for water and uncharted abandoned underground mine
workings, but I ceased doing such things in 2003 and am in effect retired.
Publications: MacCallum, R. 1992. Geophysical logs and the search for
opencast coal reserves. In: Case Histories and Methods in Mineral Resource
Evaluation. Geological Society Special Publication No 63. pp.77-93.
MacCallum, R. 1991. Opencast Coal Mining in South Wales. In: Mineral Deposit
Evaluation-A practical approach by A.E. Annels. Chapman & Hall. pp. 364
The name John Lovell is
familiar, but I can’t put a face to him. The same is true of many of the
others. I think the Janet he mentions was Janet Stone – she was from
Pontypool and I knew her quite well – she was going out with a guy called Mike
who I played rugby with, and I think they eventually married. Janet also
worked for the NCB for a while – but before I joined so our paths didn’t
cross. She was a tall girl with a lovely voice. I suspect one of
the ‘riotous’ F o D trips John refers to was one when we produced a song sheet
and a few of us took guitars. One night in the pub a local guy rushed
home for a portable tape recorder he thought our folk songs were so good!
He’d probably been drinking the local cider!
I think Stuart Arguile was
still working at the NCB when I joined but our paths didn’t cross. I
think the red haired technician he refers to was actually called Janet - a
blonde and married Kevan Walton – from my year, known as Wally.
45 years Brian, where did all
that time go? I’m off to Pembrokeshire for a few days shortly, back next
|Class of 68 - Left to right. Pete Halpin, John Underwood, Dave Dore (technician),
Kevin Walton, Dennis Evans, Charlie Jamieson, Keith Wells, Brian Locke, Roger
MacCallum, Ted Newbury (technician)
John Wroe - 2
1966-1969 Portsmouth Polytechnic, BSc Special Upper 2nd Class
Hons.Geology (Mature student).
1973-1981 MSc by Thesis - Structural Geology of the Southern Part of the
Commenced at the Univ. of the Witwatersrand. Completed at the Univ. of
- 1967 Geological Survey of Greenland - employed for 3 months geological
mapping in SW Greenland.
- 1968 Geological Survey of Greenland - employed for 3 months geological
mapping in SW Greenland.
- 1969 Quebec Dept.of Natural Resources - employed for 3 months geological
mapping in SE Quebec.
- 1969-74 Anglo American Corp. - gold mine geologist - President Steyn
GM, FSG Gold Mine, Welkom GM.
- 1974-80 Western Mining Corp. - senior exploration geologist, gold, base
metals, Pt group metals, Cr etc. mainly
- in Western Australia.
- 1980-81 Western Mining Corp. - senior research geologist - gold
deposits, based in Perth and then Melbourne.
- 1981-1988 Freeport McMoran Australia Ltd. - Chief Geologist,
responsible for exploration for a range of metals
- throughout Australia, New Zealand, PNG, Solomons, Fiji.
- 1989-1991 Normandy Ltd. - senior research geologist - Proterozoic Studies,
gold & base metals.
- 1991-1998 Normandy Ltd. - exploration manager, S.E.Asia. Set up and
managed exploration offices in Vietnam and Laos, also explored in Indonesia and
RETIRED IN 1998 and living with my wife, Chris in Melbourne, Australia.
21 Feb. 2012
John has sent in a fascinating account of his geological career and life from 1966 to 1998.