Made in Lancaster!

Group of LU graduates returning for a reunion after 50 plus years
Left to right: Robert (Bob) Chandler, Fred Parrett, Christine Giles, Roger Morley (seated), Joan Liddament, Martin Liddament, Denise Parrett

Although over 50 years have passed, this band of Lancaster graduates stayed in touch, but in some cases hadn’t met face-to-face for nearly as long. So a reunion was overdue when they gathered at Bailrigg in September 2023.

Amongst the first intake to live on campus in 1968, they’ve many tales about Bailrigg life in those early years. Bowland’s iconic tower originally had open balconies and it wasn’t unusual to be surprised by the sudden appearance of descending abseilers when members of the mountaineering club needed practise - an event especially unsettling at night! Equally common were fire brigade visits to extract people from the tower's lift when too many people tried to use it - sometimes, apparently, in pursuit of a record!

After graduation they embarked on a wide variety of careers, with three couples from the group marrying:

Fred Parrett (Economics,1971, Bowland) spent a career in Local Government in London in both Housing and IT before retiring in 2010 and returning to live in Lancaster, not entirely for sentimental reasons, but partly because Mrs Parrett (formerly Denise Stephens, a graduate of St Martin’s) is a Lancashire lass and had tired of the South-East, despite spending her last nine years as a primary school head.

Christine Giles (nee Arnold) (Philosophy,1971, Bowland). After teacher training she taught in Bracknell, then Rochdale, before leaving to pursue a career in marketing. Then children and a move to Bedfordshire in 1981 with her husband Kelvin’s job (Kelvin Giles, History,1971, Bowland) brought more change. She returned to teaching in 1988 and retired in 2012. Kelvin died unexpectedly in 2018, but she remains in Bedfordshire near her children.

Joan Liddament (nee Watson)(Cartmel) and Martin Liddament (Bowland) majored in Applied Physics and graduated in 1971. They first met outside the Faraday Lecture Theatre and married in 1971. After graduation, Martin undertook a PhD on modelling reservoir evaporation at Manchester University, while Joan took up technical abstracting, editing and library work. Subsequently, they joined the water industry with Joan working on river flow monitoring and Martin working on modelling aquifers. A family of two boys followed, and Martin switched to modelling ventilation for the International Energy Agency. In 2001, Joan and Martin teamed up to launch the International Journal of Ventilation. Now retired, they have a Morecambe Bay apartment from which they explore the countryside they first enjoyed as undergraduates.

Roger Morley (History/Politics,1971, Bowland), one of the pioneering residents of Bowland’s Tower, subsequently worked in magazine publishing and corporate communications, initially based in London and later in Devon. In retirement, he now lives with his partner Jacki in Cornwall’s Tamar Valley.

Robert Chandler (French/Marketing, 1973, Lonsdale,) switched from Russian Studies and finally graduated in 1973. He developed an international sales career, trading originally in records and cassettes before migrating to cosmetics, a role where multilingual skills proved invaluable. Having survived several multinational takeovers and lots of international travel, by 2022 it was time to retire. Following a lifetime of living in the South, he decided on a fresh start in the North by moving to Heysham.

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