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Rex Barton came from a medical family, and after house jobs at University College Hospital and marriage to Nicky (a nurse), he moved to St Mary's Hospital, Paddington, to undertake specialist training in ear, nose, and throat surgery. During this time he was sponsored by the Medical Research Council and LEPRA to carry out some pioneering research into the nasal involvement in leprosy at a hospital in central southern India. In Leicester Rex was instrumental in establishing the multidisciplinary head and neck oncology service. He had already been involved with the setting up of the Temporal Bone Laboratory (before computerisation took over) and was an enthusiastic teacher and trainer of medical students and junior staff, many of whom were on short term secondments from overseas. Rex wrote widely and had many published papers on head and neck oncology and on leprosy. His early retirement was due to ill health, which continued to affect him during his last years.
Rex was also a gifted musician and a keen and talented sportsman in his younger days. His Christian faith underpinned his life and work. He leaves his wife, three children, and two grandchildren.
Consultant ear, nose, and throat/head and neck surgeon Leicester Royal Infirmary, 1979-94 (b Carmarthen 1944, q University College Hospital, London, 1967; FRCS 1973), d 18 June 2006.