Thomas Gruffydd DaviesBMJ 2019; 366 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l4884 (Published 29 July 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;366:l4884
- Donald Williams
My friend and former colleague, Thomas Gruffydd Davies (“Tom”), died at the age of 87 after a period of gradual physical decline. From 1972 to 1990 he was a consultant psychiatrist at Cefn Coed Hospital, Swansea, where his post was in general psychiatry, and for most of this time he was responsible for the lower Swansea valley. As an astute clinician he gave this postindustrial area an excellent psychiatric service, and he was committed to postgraduate education. After stepping down from the NHS he channelled his considerable energies into his abiding passion; the Welsh language and its culture, local history, and the history of medicine. Regular publications appeared up to the last year of his life, and his magnum opus—a survey of medical services and medical practitioners in Swansea and Neath before the end of the 19th century—was published posthumously.
Tom was born and brought up in Blaendulais (Seven Sisters) a large mining village in the upper Neath Valley, West Glamorgan, south Wales, the son of Gwilym and Katie Davies. At birth his right leg was shorter and weaker, and his progress at Neath Grammar School was seriously interrupted when his right femur was fractured. An arthrodesis of the hip joint was complicated by osteomyelitis, and he was one of the first patients at Neath General Hospital to …