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Biographical entry Wall, Arthur Ernest (1917 - 1993)

MRCS 1942; FRCS 1948; MB ChB 1942; LRCP 1942.

10 April 1917
28 January 1993


Arthur Wall was born on 10 April 1917 in Hulme, Manchester, the son of Arthur Wall, a pharmacist, and Bertha Elizabeth Pack. He was educated at Old Trafford High School and received his medical education at the University of Manchester Medical School. In his preclinical years he was awarded the Tom Jones exhibition in anatomy. Following the second MB he took both a BSc and MSc in physiology, gaining the former in 1938 and the latter in 1939, and as a result was awarded the junior and senior Sydney Renshaw prizes in physiology.

He qualified in 1942 with second class honours, after which he became neurological house officer at the Manchester Royal Infirmary before joining His Majesty's Forces and becoming regimental medical officer to the 7th Mountain Regiment, with whom he saw action in Italy. He was later posted to India, Egypt and Palestine before being discharged in August 1946 with the rank of captain.

He subsequently became orthopaedic senior house officer at Salford Royal and in 1947 took a supernumerary post in general surgery at the Manchester Royal Infirmary. He then commenced his neurosurgical education at the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases in Queen Square, in which post he stayed for two years before becoming a senior registrar to the neurosurgical unit at the Leeds Infirmary, at that time headed by Arthur Henderson.

He married Eva Margaret Young, SRN, in 1950 and they had two daughters, Anne Elizabeth (born 1954) and Pamela Mary (born 1956), the latter following in her mother's footsteps by becoming a nurse.

In 1954 he was appointed consultant neurosurgeon to the department of neurosurgery at the Leeds General Infirmary and the Leeds Regional Hospital Board, this appointment being associated with the post of clinical lecturer in neurosurgery. Not surprisingly with his scientific background, Arthur took a great interest in the scientific side of his specialty, introducing stereotactic surgery to Leeds for the treatment of Parkinsonism. Among his pastimes was the study of astronomy and for many years he was a member of the Yorkshire Light Aeroplane Club based at Yeadon, although this hobby failed to satisfy him since, unexpectedly failing a medical, he was always forced to fly with a licensed companion. He enjoyed reading, but only non-fiction, and was fond of marquetry. He was a man of great loyalty and integrity and was known for his enormous (and sometimes wry) sense of humour. Prior to the onset of serious medical problems he enjoyed ten years of happy retirement before his death at the age of 76 on 28 January 1993, survived by his wife, daughters and seven grandchildren.

Sources used to compile this entry: [BMJ 1993 306 1407, with portrait].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England