Gordon Robert Bruce SkinnerBMJ 2014; 348 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g2459 (Published 03 April 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g2459
- Colin G Fink
There are always those who have been regarded as pestilential nuisances by their medical colleagues. Gordon Robert Bruce Skinner was from the very start the iconoclast’s iconoclast. A Glaswegian boy, he was described at the age of 8, by a primary school teacher whose car tyres he let down, as educationally subnormal. Despite such well supported beginnings he attended Kelvinside Academy Grammar School and qualified in medicine. He came to the University of Birmingham to train in the obstetrics department of Hugh McLaren, another Glaswegian, and quickly established himself as a larger than life character with an irrepressible Glaswegian humour and evidently was a very talented and decidedly awkward member of the department. Training in obstetrics completed, Gordon was seconded to a research fellowship in the virology department under Peter Wildy, with whom he worked closely and whom he respected. In 1976 he became a senior lecturer in microbiology with consultant status in the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.