John “Derrick” Holdsworth

BMJ 2012; 345 doi: (Published 25 July 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e4667
  1. Judy Shakespeare

John “Derrick” Holdsworth served in Africa in the Royal Army Medical Corps from 1945 to 1947. He worked as a general practitioner in Mirfield in 1949-56 and then qualified in anaesthetics and moved to Gateshead as a consultant from 1956 to 1963. After a spell at McGill University in Montreal he became senior consultant anaesthetist in Dewsbury. He was a pioneer in obstetric anaesthetics and set up one of the first epidural services in a peripheral hospital. He served as president of the Yorkshire Society of Anaesthetists from 1978-9. After retirement he volunteered to the Ministry of Overseas Development and worked in Africa and the Seychelles. He retired to his beloved Lake District, where he became an expert on trees. He was an excellent pianist; as the years went by his tastes evolved from classical music to jazz. Predeceased by Emmie in 2006, he leaves four children.


Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e4667


  • Former consultant anaesthetist (b 1922, q Leeds 1944; FFARCS), died from old age and a fractured hip on 4 May 2012.

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