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YGS-MEMBERS  July 2011

YGS-MEMBERS July 2011

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Subject:

Death of George De Boer

From:

Patrick Boylan <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Patrick Boylan <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 28 Jul 2011 00:40:07 +0100

Content-Type:

TEXT/PLAIN

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

TEXT/PLAIN (52 lines)

We are very sorry to report that we have heard through Mike Horne of the
Hull Geological Society that George De Boer died suddenly but peacefully
on 21st July, one week before his 91st birthday.

George De Boer graduated from Cambridge, and was appointed Lecturer (later
Reader) in Physical Geography at the then Hull University College in 1947,
retiring from the University of Hull in 1983. In 1984 the University
inaugurated the George De Boer biennial public lecture on a physical
geography subject in his honour.

He joined the Yorkshire Geological Society in 1944, and the following year
contributed to the Society's Proceedings (vol. 25) an important paper on
one of his early research topics: "A system of glacier lakes in the
Yorkshire Wolds". This was followed by more than a decade of extensive
studies of movement, erosion and deposition on Norwegian glaciers as part
of international teams from Cambridge, Hull and Norway. At the same time
he began more than 40 years' research on shoreline and beach processes on
the Holderness coast, and especially the formation and history of
successive Spurn Points. This led to the launching and developing of the
Hull Geography Department's more than half a century's research on
estuarine and coastal studies and more recently the Wetland Archaeology
and Environments Research Centre.

Within the Yorkshire Geological Society George De Boer was the Editor of
the Proceedings in 1956, Secretary from 1957 to 1962, and Vice-President
during 1962 and 1963. He also played a key role in the Hull Geological
Society for many years, and it was largely through his efforts as
Secretary that the Society was revived in 1961 after more than two years
of inaction following the sudden death of the President (who had been
at the same time the Society's Treasurer). In addition following the
purchase of Spurn Point by the Yorkshire Naturalists' Trust (now the
Yorkshire Trust for Nature Conservation) George de Boer became a key
adviser on the nature reserve's conservation and management.

Outside academic and scientific circles George De Boer was perhaps even
better known locally as an outstanding bass singer. He was much in demand
as a soloist for oratorios and concerts, and,following the sudden illness
of the booked professional soloist, he once stepped in at almost no notice
to sing in Hull's vast City Hall the title role in a performance with a
full orchestra and large chorus of Musorgsky's "Boris Godunov" - one of
the biggest and most demanding bass roles in the whole of opera. He
continued to sing in the choir of Cottingham Parish Church well into his
80s.



Patrick Boylan

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