Oral history of British science
Wood, Sir Martin and Lady Audrey (Part 11 of 11)
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Interviewees' home, Abingdon
Wood, Sir Martin, 1927- (speaker, male), Wood, Lady Audrey,1927- (speaker, female)
Lean, Thomas (speaker, male)
Part 11 [56:57] Remarks on AW hobbies: nature study; sewing; brother's Meccano; youth hostelling with sister, such as walking in Peak District; building Meccano toys; reading, Dickens, Scott, Austin, Hugo; going to school in England; playing with a whip top. [06:35] Remarks on MW hobbies: interest in methods of production of things; story about job in school holidays, when MW went unrewarded for speeding up production; [10:20] working with father, making things to speed up doing small jobs; interest in forestry from childhood, working in wood rather than in training corps at school; patrolling coast of Newquay with school when evacuated, German sabotage; anecdote about motorising on butter churner as a youth using vacuum cleaner motor and home made rheostat [QUOTE THIS]; [17:30] MW disapproving of father neglecting to sharpen tools; death of MW in war. [18:20] Remarks on MW siblings: half sister, four brothers, sister; comparisons of MW and siblings, practically skilled brother killed in war, surgeon brother; remarks on photo of butter churner; happy family life; occupations of other siblings, nurse, doctor; MW brother launching flying doctor service in Africa; description of MW doctor brother. [23:03] Remarks on MW: MW wanting to be an engineer from youth; MW decision to become Bevin boy, enjoying mining; family connections with Cambridge, decision to study engineering; family occupations; MW enjoyments in making things; discussion of pen holding hand carved by MW; MW artistic bent, courses in drawing at Cambridge technical college; MW considering himself a generalist, extent of knowledge of maths; being able to envisage engineering design in his mind. [30:10] Remarks on AW schooling: AW elementary and schooling in Hastings; Trinity Hall boarding school in Southport, enjoyment of exploring school before term started thanks to evacuation from Runcorn; AW life in a small boarding school for Methodist ministers daughters, daily milk ration, prep, games, singing; young or older school teachers in wartime; science teacher Joan Kemp; music teacher Katie K [Kempster]; [35:50] science lessons, having physics lessons from boy's school physics master; anecdote about school parliament voting for chemistry to be taught at school certificate level; AW all rounder status; AW deciding to study biology rather than medicine, enjoying studying wildlife; dissection in biology classes; sport; decision to go to Cambridge university. [40:30] Remarks on MW schooling: attending New College School, Oxford; war preventing a year in France; disabled teachers during war; disagreements with masters; enjoying exploring countryside in Cornwall, avoiding land-mines on Friston Beach; dislike of organised games; MW enjoying most subjects if well taught, such as chemistry and carpentry; disliking classics, but winning a prize; injured teachers during war; MW mostly enjoying school; MW evacuation to hotel in Cornwall from Holton in Norfolk; wartime conditions meaning the suspension of normal public school rules; [48:30] MW doing gardening for locals in Cornwall and repairing woodland used as army training ground rather than school training corps; MW later buying local wood as a nature reserve. [51:20] Remarks on: MW school results; AW working late into evenings. Description of AW in late teens, vivacious family. Description of AW in late teens.
Interview with scientific instrument designers and entrepreneurs Sir Martin and Lady Audrey Wood