AOUG Vice-Chancellor Sir John Horlock Award for Science

John Horlock served as Vice-Chancellor at The Open University from 1981 to 1990.  He was born in North London and went to school at Edmonton Latymer. He had decided on an engineering apprenticeship at Shorts, Rochester but his Headmaster instead persuaded him to go to Cambridge University, where he gained a first in mechanical sciences. Horlock worked briefly at Rolls-Royce before returning to Cambridge to gain a PhD. He turned down an offer to return to Rolls-Royce as he was concerned that he would be spending most of his time on military applications.

In 1958 Horlock left Cambridge to become Professor and Head of the Mechanical Engineering Department of Liverpool University, returning to Cambridge as Professor of Engineering in 1967. In both roles he is credited with educational innovations to improve both research and teaching. His academic work on gas turbines, compressors and the jet engine made him a leading figure in a field which transformed transport across the world. In 1974 Horlock became Vice-Chancellor of the University of Salford, which had become a University only in 1967 and made major progress under his leadership.

Horlock joined The Open University in 1981with a commitment in the field of continuing education, particularly in science and technology was seen as one of the factors leading to his appointment. As a member of the ‘Finniston Committee’ looking at the engineering profession, he was very keen to strengthen the OU in science and engineering. As well as leading the battle against the government over funding cuts, Horlock also ensured the introduction of a taught postgraduate Masters programme, oversaw the opening of The Open Business School  and the expansion of the OU into Western Europe. After retiring from the OU, Horlock was appointed Treasurer and Vice-President of ‘The Royal Society’ for five years. He was given a knighthood in the1996 New Years Honours, for services to science, engineering and education. The Horlock building on The Open University's Walton Hall campus was named in his honour in 1989, and the Association of Open University Graduates' Sir John Horlock Award for Science was established two years later in 1991.

Sir John was the Vice-Chancellor at the time of the official launch of the Association of Open University Graduates and he presented Olga Camm with the official scroll on the steps of Walton Hall at the OU Open Day on 24th June 1988 and assisted Olga in planting our Beech tree on the Mulberry Lawn in commemoration. He died on 22nd May 2015.

Previous Winners
2014 Jon Gregson
2013 Marcus Lohr
2012 Liam Steele
2011 Ian Williamson
2010 Andrew Mason
2009 Rosalind Hopwood
2008 Suzanne Simmons
2007 Claire Kotecki
2006 Amanda Smith
2005 No recipient
2004 Jayne Turner
2003 Ashley Seabrook
2002 John Barker
2001 Mark Gardener
2000 Sharon Moore
1999 Andrew Bedder
1998 No recipient
1997 Jill Clarke
1996 Clive Roberts
1995 Peter Taylor
1994 Peter Stokes
1993 Stephen Hopkins
1992 Bob Steele
1991 Jill Eyres

 

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