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Biographical entry Tracey, Basil Martin (1899 - 1991)

OBE 1969; MRCS 1923; FRCS 1925; MB London 1920, BS 1926; LRCP 1923.

19 October 1899
Willand, Devon
9 November 1991
General practitioner and Medical Officer


Basil Tracey was born on 19 October 1899 at Willand, Devon, where his father, Henry Eugene Tracey, was a general practitioner, four of whose eleven children were qualified medical practitioners. His mother was Emily Alice, née Martin. He was educated at Monkton Combe School and St Bartholomew's Hospital.

Owing to poor eyesight he was unable to serve in the first world war and after graduation entered general practice in 1931. In 1947 he decided that the National Health Service would not allow him to give individual attention to patients and so entered a purely private practice, but was also a medical officer to various industrial concerns and to Norwich prison, for which service he was awarded an OBE in 1969.

He had many interests: singing in the Norwich Philharmonic Choir and acting as a guide to Norwich Cathedral. He sailed regularly on the Norfolk broads, especially in Norfolk Punts, and in one of these he established a record for the fastest single-hulled boat in the country in 1964. He was a great character with an infectious enthusiasm for life and people.

He married Katherine Reavell Scott (Kitty) on 15 September 1931 and they had four children - two sons, William, who died in infancy, and Peter, and two daughters, Jillian and Marion. After Kitty's death he married Rachel, who survived him along with his children and eight grandchildren when he died on 9 November 1991, aged 92.

Sources used to compile this entry: [BMJ 1992 304 1173 with portrait].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England