The chair has been supported by Nigel Blackwell, Senior Trustee of the Pharsalia Charitable Trust, and will be named after his father, Richard Blackwell.
Richard Blackwell's international bookselling and publishing business originated from Blackwell's university bookshop on Broad Street, Oxford. His lifelong support of the University included replacing the two missing Muses, Melpomene and Euterpe, on the empty plinths on top of the Clarendon Building in 1974. He also awarded multiple gifts to Oxford colleges in 1979 – Blackwell's centenary year – and his donation to St Cross College enabled its merger with Pusey House, thereby repaying Blackwell's 'debt of gratitude' to the University.
The impact of the Richard Blackwell Pharsalia Professorship in Colorectal Surgery will be substantial, assuring major investment in advancing knowledge and expertise in colorectal conditions and related health issues. The value of this work in informing other areas of research beyond this specific area of medicine will also be considerable.
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