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Biographical entry Mills, Wilfrid George (1915 - 1988)

TD 1946; MRCS 1938; FRCS 1940; MB ChB Birmingham 1938; MRCOG 1947; FRCOG 1957; LRCP 1938.

20 August 1915
13 April 1988
Obstetrician and gynaecologist


Wilfred George Mills was born in Birmingham on 20 August 1915, the son of George Percival Mills, FRCS (see Lives 1952-64, pages 289-290). One uncle, Humphrey Humphreys was Professor of Dental Surgery in Birmingham; another uncle, Seymour Barling was Professor of Surgery in Birmingham and his elder brother, John N Mills was Professor of Physiology in Manchester. He was at school at Oundle and entered the Birmingham Medical School where he won medals in physiology, surgery, medicine and neurology after receiving four Queen's Scholarships. He graduated with first class honours in 1938, and almost immediately, being a member of the Territorial Army, he served in France and then in West Africa.

After the war he was influenced not only by H H Sampson for his surgical technique but also by Dame Hilda Lloyd who directed him into gynaecology. He visited America and also Amsterdam where he learnt the Schauta procedure before his appointment to the staff at the United Birmingham Hospitals. He became chairman of the division of obstetrics and gynaecology in Birmingham and was elected to the Council of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists where he became responsible for the examinations. This brought him into contact again with Africa but he also visited Libya and Australia as a lecturer and examiner. He wrote many papers and developed an interest in intra-uterine contraceptive devices. He was also elected President of the Section of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the Royal Society of Medicine.

In 1942 he married Margaret (Peggy) Rowley who qualified in medicine with him and became a JP in 1965. They had three sons and one daughter, none of whom took up medicine. When he retired they moved from Birmingham to a village in Worcestershire where he was kept fully occupied by a large garden and the local church. He also made several working trips to Botswana and one to St Lucia. He was known for his warmth and his kindly temperament and he enjoyed many sports including cricket, hockey, tennis, squash and skiing. He died on 13 April 1988 survived by his wife and family.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Brit med J 1988, 296, 1610; 297, 419].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England