Ref NoRMB/37
TitleOral history interview with Dr Alan Millington on 30 June 2015
Date30 June 2015
Extent1 wav file and 1 transcript
Name of CreatorUniversity of Surrey, Alumni and Development Department
Nelson, Abigail
Millington, Alan
DescriptionInterview conducted by Abigail Nelson.

00:00-00:40: Introduction

00:40-01:04: Why Battersea? Describes entry requirements

01:04-02:31: First Impressions of Battersea: describes Freshers' week; recalls speech from Peter Leggett; remembers tasks to complete in London, lions in Trafalgar Square; recalls sports trials at Colliers Wood Sports Ground, joined rugby team

02:31-03:40: Sports: rugby; recalls success against London colleges; mentions Universal Athletics Union Championships

03:40-04:57: Socialising: recalls Saturday night dances, alternated between Battersea College and Chelsea College; big jazz bands, Kenny Ball, Acker Bilk, Johnny Dankworth, Dutch Swing College;

04:57-07:23: Course format: mostly lectures, gap after Easter for revision; laboratory practicals in afternoon; Mr Lawrence taught maths, Henryk Zygalski taught Chemical Engineering maths, Enigma code; recalls test of university boiler;

07:23-09:23: Lectures: Dr Houston, lecturer in Chemical Thermodynamics, very short first lecture; grant from local authority for tuition;

09:23-13:19: Best memories: high point of years were examination results, letters from Russell Tailby, head of department; wins at rugby and cricket; describes Chemical Engineers dinners; recalls buying second hand textbooks

13:19-14:25: Student demographic: Very few girls in engineering; recalls employment of first female Chemical Engineer lecturer in 1990s

14:25-18:04: Student Life: accommodation in Ralph West Halls of Residence; mentions television room; recalls studying late, then visiting public house;
Food: describes meals served at The Refectory; mentions tea and coffee; describes The Eagle Public House; remembers the Green Café

18:04-20:51: Food: describes food from The Refectory; remembers cooking as masters degree student; describes buying cheap meat; recalls local restaurants, Good Earth in Chelsea, Indian restaurant on Battersea Park Road, Schmidt's German-Austrian restaurant

20:51-22:20: Activities: Sport, rugby and cricket once a week, tennis too; dances on Saturday nights; studied on Sundays; recalls names of external examiners were published, so students would buy books they had written, in Foyles, Tottenham Court Road, or London University Bookshop

22:20-26:16: Socialising: Coffee in television room; discuss work in rooms with other students; recalls girls came to dances from Battersea College of Domestic Science and Chelsea college; mentions RAG week, drink dry the Six Bells public house; describes flour fight on Albert Bridge between Battersea and Chelsea; stealing mascots, Battersea mascot Oscar, a stuffed cat; recalls dance when Johnny Dankworth performed with Cleo Laine;

26:16-29:32: Sports: recalls organising teams and trips; mentions Colliers Wood, sports played simultaneously, rugby, hockey, football; recalls lunch afterwards; mentions large plunge baths in men's changing rooms; great camaraderie

29:32-34:10: Students' Union: describes role as Sports Chairman during Doctoral Degree; ; recalls representatives sent to World University Games, Harvey Gitzman, middle weight judo; University at the Union Championships; British University Sports Federation competitions;

34:10-39:40: Doctoral Degree: describes balancing SU work with studies; recalls working late in laboratory on practical experiments; mentions door porter, Tim with St Bernard dog; mentions Jim Thomas, supervisor; recalls laboratory accidents; recalls reserved table in Edwin Tate Library for Doctoral degree students; recalls employment demonstrating experiments for undergraduates; mentions Jock Campbell; recalls relationship with other doctoral degree students

39:40-41:06: Graduation: Undergraduate degree ceremony at Crystal Palace; remembers receiving letter from head of department detailing degree result; describes Doctoral degree graduation at Guildford Cathedral

41:06-43:16: Battersea Charter: recalls Vice Chancellor, Peter Leggett, arranged a party; champagne reception in The Refectory, recalls Chancellor Alf Roban [Robens] was there; mentions Jimmy Johnson, academic registrar, and Leslie Rush, bursar;

43:16-47:21: Move to Guildford: recalls helping to organise move; remembers first three weeks off work, due to building delays; recalls role as warden of the Manor House halls on Falcon Hill; mentions gender segregation in halls; describes sexual liberation

47:21-48:31: Building Stag Hill Campus: First buildings AA, AB and AC, Library restaurant, lecture theatre block, Senate House; two halls of residence, Battersea Court and Surrey Court; no curtains in halls of residence; floors segregated by gender

48:31-51:12: Battersea halls of residence: recalls fire exit which joined male and female accommodation; mentions warden, Mike Clark; recalls senior rugby players sold condoms

51:12-54:56: Assistant Lecturer: recalls full timetable of lectures; ran laboratories for three years; shared office with Frank Molls, lecturer in Field Technology; mentions Professor Norman Curtly; Jim Thomas, mentor; John Lenart, Head of Department; Clutterbuck; Arnold Freedman, particles; Mike Winkler, Adrian Thomas; many senior Battersea staff moved elsewhere

54:56-57:41: Moving round campus: Building levels based on metres above sea level; gained personal office, room for tutorials; easier to navigate Guildford than Battersea College; describes toilets in Battersea Main Building

57:41-01:06:57: Battersea College atmosphere: recalls collegiate quality; remembers set times for coffee and lunch; recalls termly department dinners; remembers mud at Guildford during construction; recalls studying at boy's technical school before degree; recalls University introduced different genders and ethnicities; mentions Indian families in Clapham North

01:06:57-01:09:14: Best memories: Easy access to London; remembers Trafalgar Square in 1966 when England won World Cup

01:09:22 - End
Administrative HistoryAlan Millington studied Chemical Engineering at Battersea Polytechnic, graduating with a BSc in 1965 and a PhD 3 years later in 1968.
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