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Logo of bmjThis ArticleThe BMJ
BMJ. 2007 July 28; 335(7612): 215.
PMCID: PMC1934437

Ernest William (“Bill”) Deane

Bill Deane was born in 1918. His father, Dr Norman “Doc” Deane, was a general practitioner in Christchurch, Dorset.

Bill was educated at Sherborne School and then went up to Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, to read medicine. He did his clinical studies at The London Hospital in Whitechapel and qualified in 1941. The second world war required him to go straight into military service, and he served as a surgeon lieutenant in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, mainly in the Mediterranean, until 1946. He then joined his father in general practice in Christchurch as “the young Dr Deane”, remaining there for 38 years.

As a general practitioner, Bill showed the type of devotion to duty and close knowledge of his community that was typical of his generation. He worked long hours, and was always prepared to work hard on behalf of his patients.

Outside work, his post-war years were dominated by sporting and political endeavours. He loved sailing, competing in the1948 Olympic trials and the 1949 Fastnet race. He was an early enthusiast for long distance motor rallies, and he was successful in five Alpine rallies. He came first in his class in the Monte Carlo rally on several occasions. He won the RAC rally in 1958.

He was selected as Conservative prospective parliamentary candidate for Southampton Itchen constituency in 1951 but failed to win the seat. He later became agent for the sitting Bournemouth MP.

In 1949 he became one of the youngest magistrates to be appointed, and he continued to sit on the Christchurch bench until 1981. He was chairman of the juvenile court at Bournemouth Crown Court.

Bill devoted much time and effort to numerous charitable causes. He was a founder member of Christchurch Rotary from its inception in 1949, and was awarded the Paul Harris fellowship for long service in 2005. He was actively involved in the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution), and was medical officer to Mudeford lifeboat for many years.

In 1983 he married Dr Ruth Scott-Jupp, also a general practitioner in Christchurch, and they spent their retirement sailing and travelling extensively.

He suffered a disabling stroke in 2005, and spent his last year in a nursing home. He died from heart failure on 18 February 2007.

He is survived by his wife, and by his two children from his first marriage.

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