Bedales’ Biology department honours Robin Hill

dr-david-hillOne of the highlights of Parents’ Day was the presence in the Biology department of Dr David Hill, an Old Bedalian who is the son of another Old Bedalian, Robin Hill (1912-1917).

This year the Biology department display celebrated the life and work of Robin Hill, a biologist renowned for his work on chloroplasts and what is called the ‘Hill reaction’. Before moving on to Biochemistry, while still at Bedales, Robin Hill also developed an interest in plant dyes such as Woad and Madder. On display were some of his experiments with different dyes and fabrics – experiments that do not look dissimilar to a current Bedales Assessed Course project on plant dyes by Helena Alexander (Block 5).

This interest was inherited by David Hill, who is a real authority on the subject and was very happy to discuss it at length with visitors to the exhibition.

Robin Hill also invented the fisheye camera lens and was a very talented watercolour artist. The display, organised by Mary Shotter, focused on all aspects of Robin Hill’s life with many paintings and books that originated from his time at Bedales.

The department is very grateful to David and his wife Ruth, who both gave up the day to come and spend time in his old school and share anecdotes about his remarkable father.

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