Barron Bruce MacGillivray

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: (Published 05 October 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d6420
  1. Neil McIntyre

Barron Bruce MacGillivray (“Bruce”) was born in South Africa in 1927. His political leanings became evident when, aged 13 and boarding at Johannesburg’s King Edward VII School, he used its facilities to set up a night school for local black employees. From 1946 he studied medicine at the University of Witwatersrand, but in 1951, unhappy about apartheid, he moved to Britain, entered Manchester’s medical school, and qualified LRCP MRCS in 1955.

After junior posts in and around Manchester, he qualified MRCP in 1959 (FRCP 1974). Then, somewhat unusually, he worked for a London medical degree as an external student and graduated MB BS in 1962, having been registrar and senior registrar at the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases for three years. In 1964 he was appointed consultant in clinical neurophysiology and neurology at the Royal Free Hospital but before starting did a year’s research at the University of California, Los Angeles. In 1971 he was also made a consultant at the National Hospital.

MacGillivray was dean of the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine (RFHSM) from 1975 to 1989. His early years were arguably the most precarious in its …

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