Whatever the Weather

July 2, 2019

The weather may be something we experience every day, but that does not mean we are always prepared for what it might throw at us, which has been more noticeable for us in the UK this spring and summer. 

A lot of time and energy has been committed over the years to being able to predict and report on the atmospheric conditions of the future, and many of our Who’s Who biographees have taken their part. The Meteorological Office, established in 1854, has become the UK’s most trusted weather information source, and David Axford spent much of his career there before becoming Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization. Retired BBC Weather broadcaster Bill Giles, OBE is now an after-dinner speaker. Meanwhile we have amateur weather-watchers like journalist Alan Rogers and publisher Christopher Ward.

Perhaps you identify with those who are willing to do the activities they enjoy regardless of what’s happening in the sky. The late Sir Prafulla Ray, Professor of Chemistry in Calcutta, enjoyed “taking long walks in all kinds of weather” while Moira Sinclair, Chief Executive of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, enjoys “walking despite the rain”. Or maybe you’d rather chase more favourable conditions. Kate Brindley of the Chatsworth and Devonshire Collections spends her spare time “seeking the sun and good coffee”, while scientist Michael Goosey prefers “Madeira sun”.

Other weather-based recreations come from director and producer Nicolas Kent who spends his time “dead-heading roses in the sun”, Benjamin Elkington, QC who enjoys “lighting fires in the rain” and Prof. Colin Lizieri who lists “hurricanes” amongst his pastimes. Whether it’s watching, chasing or researching them, who knows?

Another option of course is to avoid the unpredictability of the outside altogether. Richard Todd, QC lists his recreations as “laws, wars and the great indoors”, while Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy author Douglas Adams preferred “staring out of the window”.

If we can learn anything from our Who’s Who biographees, perhaps it should be to always go out (or stay in) to do the things we enjoy, whatever the weather.