Brasenose College

Oxford, United Kingdom

Brasenose College

Oxford, United Kingdom
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News Article | February 16, 2017

Richard Burton, who has died aged 83, was a third of the architectural partnership of Ahrends, Burton & Koralek (ABK), alongside Peter Ahrends and Paul Koralek. It is not particularly rare that three architects should meet as students and go on to practise together, but most unusual that all three should be involved in design and should remain lifelong friends. The partnership survived controversy when its competition-winning extension to the National Gallery in London was dubbed a “monstrous carbuncle” by the Prince of Wales in 1984 and cancelled, and it became one of the few practices founded in the early 1960s to span the gulf between the public and private sectors. Of the partners, Burton was perhaps the least affected by the prince’s diatribe, for he had already forged an independent path in the design of low-rise housing, hospitals and energy efficiency, in the last of which he was a pioneer; he and the prince should have got on. Burton subsequently took charge of the firm’s design of the British embassy in Moscow, completed in 2000, after building a house for himself and his wife, Mireille, in Kentish Town, north London, which he opened to the public on Open House weekends. Burton was born in Kensington, central London. His mother was Vera Poliakoff, an actor and director (stage name Vera Lindsay), the daughter of a Russian engineer, and his father, Basil Burton, was half-Irish and ran the Academy cinema in Oxford Street before second world war service; he later also worked as an actor. Their marriage was short-lived, and as a child Richard stayed with his grandmother, Christabel Burton, a member of the Harmsworth newspaper dynasty and the client for one of Britain’s first modern movement houses, Torilla, outside Hatfield, Hertfordshire. An early interest in painting was directed towards architecture at Bryanston school, in Dorset, and furthered when in 1944 his mother married Gerald Barry, who became director general of the Festival of Britain. Barry recommended the Architectural Association (AA), where on entering in 1951 Burton quickly teamed up with Ahrends and Koralek, both émigrés. All shared a love of Frank Lloyd Wright, then still unfashionable, as well as of Le Corbusier. After he had spent 18 months at the London county council, which showed no interest in his designs, Burton’s fortune changed when he joined Powell & Moya, masters of modern architecture then designing Princess Margaret hospital in Swindon and exquisite extensions to Brasenose College, Oxford. When Burton left to set up ABK with Ahrends and Koralek in 1961, and the new practice needed work (despite Koralek winning an international competition for a library at Trinity College, Dublin), Philip Powell generously passed on two major commissions: a theological college in Chichester – a taut, brutalist composition – and a business school, which became Templeton College, at Kennington, Oxford, built in seven phases to provide comfortable accommodation for business people on short courses and which was both stylish and flexible. ABK’s interest in structure and light was immediately evident, but in the business school Burton integrated architecture and landscape, with the landscape architect James Hope, who became a regular collaborator. Burton’s mother introduced him to the art dealer John Kasmin, for whom he and Ahrends designed a Bond Street gallery in 1962-63, described by Forbes magazine as “London’s swingingest 60s art gallery”. It was in the realm of public housing and energy efficiency that Burton found a personal voice, while retaining the ABK “look” of blond brick and oddly pitched roofs. An estate at Chalvedon in Basildon, Essex, comprised a series of friendly courtyards, one and three storeys high. Burton employed a social psychologist to interview the first residents, whose feedback informed more distinctive entrances and cheaper heating in the later phases. A second development in Basildon, Felmore, commissioned in 1974, was the first major housing project in Britain to take account of energy conservation, incorporating high standards of insulation. Burton became the coordinator for the RIBA’s first energy initiative and chair of its low-energy group. At his next major building, St Mary’s hospital in the Isle of Wight, energy was recycled and steel cladding reflected heat on warm days, while bouncing light into the building. Again he worked with Hope, and incorporated artworks, imparting a sense of place despite having to follow a standardised National Health Service “nucleus” plan. He also designed two buildings at Hooke Park, Dorset (1983-90), where the Parnham Trust set up a training centre dedicated to the sustainable use of timber, and was instrumental in passing the estate to the AA in 2003, contributing generously to secure its future. Burton also took charge of the partnership’s last major commission, when ABK was invited in 1988 to design the British embassy in Moscow. This was an opportunity for public redemption after the National Gallery, and to connect with his Russian roots. He designed a series of separate pavilions housing residential and office accommodation linked by high-level bridges, rich in detail and with the ceremonial spaces filled by specially commissioned furniture and works of art. The firm closed its practice in 2012 when Ahrends and Koralek retired; Burton had left the partnership in 2002 because of illness. In the late 1980s Koralek had established an Irish office, and this practice continues. Burton’s own house, largely built by himself and his three sons between 1986 and 1988, and extended in 1991, explored similar ideas in a homespun way, a sequence of three large rooms set behind a conservatory that stored heat or sheltered the house from it according to the season, with a bedroom on top. Constructed mainly of timber and stuffed with treasured objects, this was an inclusive, all-embracing modernist building that was easy to live in. The public held the same view, forming long queues on Open House weekends to be stewarded around the house by Burton’s grandchildren and to chat to the architect for hours. An annexe added in 2002 was ostensibly for his daughter Kate and her family, but Burton seized the opportunity to explore ideas for low-cost student housing, so the unit is divided by a courtyard garden and works equally as bedsitter accommodation. Burton was an expansive, eloquent communicator and a generous friend. His last major project was a book about his own house, with James O Davies, which is suffused with love for his close-knit family and the craft of art and architecture. He is survived by Mireille, by their children, Mark, David (known as Bim), Jonathan and Kate, and by eight grandchildren.

Boyd R.,University of Manchester | Richard Boyd C.A.,Brasenose College
International Journal of Developmental Biology | Year: 2010

The nature of Cambridge (UK) placental and fetal research in the middle third of the twentieth century is reviewed on the basis of published literature and personal recollection. Joseph Barcroft is a central figure who came to fetal research late in an extremely productive career which is briefly sketched. Contemporaneous Cambridge academics in the field included J.D. Boyd (the authors' father), J. Hammond, F.H.A. Marshall, R.A. McCance, J. Needham, A.S. Parkes and Elsie Widdowson. The then current Cambridge academic geography is explained and features of its scientific life such as funding, institutional structure and ethos, teaching and clinical duties, domestic and gender roles, and political context, including war and empire, are briefly considered. The testing of research findings against general principles and use of quantitative thinking are identified as important features. Intergenerational connections, often within individual families, are identified as a striking feature. The long-term impact of Cambridge work of this period; locally, in current trophoblast and feto-placental genetic research, in Oxford in probably influencing G.S. Dawes' research leadership, and internationally, especially through D.H. Barron, and through him to the Denver School, is considered. That human placental and embryological specimens collected by J.D. Boyd have received a new lease of life as the Boyd Collection, including use by Allen Enders is noted. Mechanisms for the maintenance of scientific quality and productivity during the period, mainly through the scientist himself relying on an internalised sense of obligation, are contrasted with those current in the UK and more widely; formal peer-review at frequent intervals, with subsequent allocation of short-term funding. The strengths and weaknesses of each are considered. © 2009 UBC Press.

Frost T.D.G.,Lincoln College | Sinha D.,Brasenose College | Gilbert B.J.,Green Templeton College
Philosophy, Ethics, and Humanities in Medicine | Year: 2014

When an individual facing intractable pain is given an estimate of a few months to live, does hastening death become a viable and legitimate alternative for willing patients? Has the time come for physicians to do away with the traditional notion of healthcare as maintaining or improving physical and mental health, and instead accept their own limitations by facilitating death when requested? The Universities of Oxford and Cambridge held the 2013 Varsity Medical Debate on the motion " This House Would Legalise Assisted Dying" This article summarises the key arguments developed over the course of the debate. We will explore how assisted dying can affect both the patient and doctor; the nature of consent and limits of autonomy; the effects on society; the viability of a proposed model; and, perhaps most importantly, the potential need for the practice within our current medico-legal framework. © 2014 Frost et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Gyngell C.,Australian National University | Douglas T.,University of Oxford | Douglas T.,Brasenose College
Bioethics | Year: 2015

Reproductive genetic technologies (RGTs) allow parents to decide whether their future children will have or lack certain genetic predispositions. A popular model that has been proposed for regulating access to RGTs is the 'genetic supermarket'. In the genetic supermarket, parents are free to make decisions about which genes to select for their children with little state interference. One possible consequence of the genetic supermarket is that collective action problems will arise: if rational individuals use the genetic supermarket in isolation from one another, this may have a negative effect on society as a whole, including future generations. In this article we argue that RGTs targeting height, innate immunity, and certain cognitive traits could lead to collective action problems. We then discuss whether this risk could in principle justify state intervention in the genetic supermarket. We argue that there is a plausible prima facie case for the view that such state intervention would be justified and respond to a number of arguments that might be adduced against that view. © 2014 The Authors. Bioethics published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Boyd C.A.R.,Brasenose College
Brain | Year: 2010

New clinical and employment information, together with over-looked previously published information, on a patient (H.C.) is reviewed. H.C., who died at the age of 76 in 1939, was found, by chance during anatomical dissection, to lack a cerebellum. This synthesis challenges an unusual and interesting account of cerebellar agenesis published in Brain in 1994 by Glickstein (see also Glickstein, 2006), in which the allegedly 'bogus' oral history of this individual's motor skills was held to have led to 'medical myth making'. Part of the burden of the 1994 paper was to show that 'cerebellar agenesis is always associated with profound motor deficits'. Glickstein therefore focussed on an apparent 'exception' to this conclusion, concerning the brain of a single case, H.C., who died 70 years ago, who 'had given rise to an oral tradition alleging that normal movement is possible despite total cerebellar agenesis'. Glickstein (1994) concludes 'despite an oral tradition to the contrary there is absolutely no evidence about the motor capacities of this man during his life'. Rather remarkably, an extensive history of this individual has become available, its significance becoming noted only this year; this complements and adds to a previous brief history published on H.C. (and not mentioned in the 1994 paper; see below). The new evidence includes the death certificate stating the man's occupation to have been 'manual labourer' with all the implications relevant to his supposed incapacity. The written historical record thus confronts the alleged 'myth'. It is interesting to note how medical records on an undoubtedly very ordinary citizen were recorded in London in the 1930s (before the NHS was set up in 1949) and how they could be made accessible to clinical colleagues in east London in the middle of World War II blitz bombing of the capital. © The Author 2010.

Boyd C.A.R.,Brasenose College
Placenta | Year: 2013

The placenta must act as a surrogate lung, gastrointestinal tract and kidney for the fetus as well as acting as an endocrine gland necessary for the maintenance of a successful pregnancy: to achieve this, to what extent does the trophoblast necessarily share a similar epithelial phenotype? Here I review from a historical and a contemporary perspective some relevant studies with an emphasis on the similarities and differences between small intestinal and trophoblast biology. Certain physiological, structural and cell biological similarities are striking.

Shennan D.B.,Brasenose College | Boyd C.A.R.,Brasenose College
Journal of Mammary Gland Biology and Neoplasia | Year: 2014

This review describes the properties and regulation of the membrane transport proteins which supply the mammary gland with aminonitrogen to support metabolism under different physiological conditions (i.e. pregnancy, lactation and involution). Early studies focussed on characterising amino acid and peptide transport pathways with respect to substrate specificity, kinetics and hormonal regulation to allow a broad picture of the systems within the gland to be established. Recent investigations have concentrated on identifying the individual transporters at the molecular level (i.e. mRNA and protein). Many of the latter studies have identified the molecular correlates of the transport systems uncovered in the earlier functional investigations but in turn have also highlighted the need for more amino acid transport studies to be performed. The transporters function as either cotransporters and exchangers (or both) and act in a coordinated and regulated fashion to support the metabolic needs of the gland. However, it is apparent that a physiological role for a number of the transport proteins has yet to be elucidated. This article highlights the many gaps in our knowledge regarding the precise cellular location of a number of amino acid transporters within the gland. We also describe the role of amino acid transport in mammary cell volume regulation. Finally, the important role that individual mammary transport proteins may have in the growth and proliferation of mammary tumours is discussed. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Schreier A.L.,Duke University | Grove M.,University of Oxford | Grove M.,Brasenose College
Animal Behaviour | Year: 2010

Random walks have long been used to characterize animal movement patterns; recently, this practice has received renewed impetus via the application of Lévy walk models. Whilst such models have produced encouraging results, the methods applied have been inconsistent and often problematic; furthermore, primates remain under-represented in such studies. This paper addresses both of these problems via the explanation of a novel and robust analytical method as applied to an extensive primate data set. In a study of a band of hamadryas baboons at the Filoha outpost of Awash National Park, Ethiopia from March 2005 to February 2006, the baboons' location was mapped every 15. min during all-day follows using a handheld GPS unit, yielding over 3000 step lengths and waiting times documented across 105 complete follows. Both power law and exponential models were fitted to the step length and waiting time data via maximum likelihood procedures within a model selection paradigm facilitated by the use of an information criterion to distinguish between models. Results show that the step lengths were exponentially distributed, and thus consistent with a random distribution of resources in space. Waiting times, however, were power law distributed, and thus consistent with a power law distribution of patch sizes. We evaluate these results within a discussion of the extent to which random search algorithms are applicable to animals with extensive knowledge of their habitats. © 2010 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

Dickmann J.R.M.,Brasenose College | Dickmann L.M.,Goethe University Frankfurt
American Journal of Emergency Medicine | Year: 2010

Antipsychotics can cause acute rhabdomyolysis (RM) as part of a neuroleptic malignant syndrome or via a direct toxic effect on myocytes. Such a serious adverse effect has been rarely linked to quetiapine treatment. This report highlights a different pathophysiology of RM after quetiapine overdosing with suicidal intent. The 44-year-old patient had schizophrenia and took 9000 mg, 10 times his daily dosage. He became somnolent and later unconscious. After lying for 14 hours on a firm mattress probably motionless, he was difficult to arouse next morning and could hardly walk. In the emergency department (ED), brown urine and a creatinine kinase (CK) of 30 660 U/L were detected. Rhabdomyolysis was treated successfully with plasma expansion. A compartment syndrome led to bilateral peroneal paresis. A direct toxic effect of quetiapine on myocytes as claimed in the past is unlikely because, after reexposure to quetiapine 3 months later, CK remained normal. It is recommended that every patient who overdosed on quetiapine should be thoroughly assessed in ED including measurement of CK to detect RM due to long immobility early and avoid acute renal failure. © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Douglas T.,University of Oxford | Douglas T.,Brasenose College
Neuroethics | Year: 2016

In this issue, Elizabeth Shaw and Gulzaar Barn offer a number of replies to my arguments in ‘Criminal Rehabilitation Through Medical Intervention: Moral Liability and the Right to Bodily Integrity’, Journal of Ethics (2014). In this article I respond to some of their criticisms. © 2016 The Author(s)

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