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Biographical entry Woodd-Walker, Geoffrey Basil (1900 - 1991)

MRCS 1925; FRCS 1928; MB BChir 1927; LRCP 1925.

9 June 1900
28 May 1991
General surgeon


Geoffrey Woodd-Walker was a consultant general surgeon at the West London Hospital from 1932 to 1965, and Vice-Dean of the medical school for many years before its merger with Charing Cross Hospital Medical School.

He was born on 9 June 1900 in Bayswater, the only son of a general practitioner, Dr Basil Woodd MD, and Margaret Jane Routledge. He was to live in the same house in London for the next 73 years, although the family also had a house in Tankerton, Kent, where he spent holidays and weekends. His uncle was Cyril H Walker FRCS, ophthalmic surgeon at Bristol Eye Hospital. He was educated at Rugby and King's College Cambridge, where he was an undergraduate immediately after the end of the first world war. From there he won an exhibition to St Mary's Hospital, Paddington, where he qualified in 1925. After house appointments at St Mary's and a voyage to the Far East as ship's doctor with the Bibby Line, he was appointed resident medical officer at St Mary's, and he also worked at the Freemasons' Hospital and the Bolingbroke Hospital.

During the second world war he worked for the Emergency Medical Service at Ashford Hospital, Middlesex, and also at Cosham, Portsmouth, after D-Day. He was a skilled surgeon with a reputation for gentle hands and high standards. He later became secretary of the Medical Society of London, and President of the West London Medico-Chirurgical Society.

After retirement he served on medical appeals tribunals, and at the age of 73 he moved to Colchester, remaining active until his death on 28 May 1991, at the age of 90. He was a life fellow of the Zoological Society and keenly interested in zoology and animal conservation.

In 1933 he married Ulla Troili in Uddeholm, Sweden, and she survived him, together with their two sons, one of whom, Robert, is a paediatrician in Colchester.

Sources used to compile this entry: [BMJ 1991 303 413, with portrait; King's College Cambridge Annual Report, October 1993].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England