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Logo of bmjThis ArticleThe BMJ
BMJ. 2007 November 24; 335(7629): 1101.
PMCID: PMC2094188

Hubert Campbell

Hubert Campbell was one of the pioneers in the development of medical statistics in the post-war period. Almost uniquely for the time he became qualified in both medicine and mathematics.

He went up to Leeds University in 1938 to study mathematics but, frustrated at not being able to fight because of a congenitally deformed hand, he left in1940 and joined the Air Ministry and then the Admiralty in London working in Operational Research. After the war he completed his degree at the University of London while working as a trainee actuary. He then joined Durham University Medical School in Newcastle as the only lecturer in medical statistics and worked on the Newcastle 1000 families study and other studies. However, as he later wrote, “it became apparent that, in 1953, a statistician in this field (medical research) in Britain was not free” and so he enrolled as a medical student in Durham, graduating in 1959. In 1963 he joined the Welsh National School of Medicine in Cardiff, as a joint appointment with the MRC Epidemiology Unit, headed by Archie Cochrane. In 1970 he became the foundation professor of medical statistics in Cardiff and was editor of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. He was also a consultant epidemiologist for the World Health Organization in Geneva and in India . After retirement he began a second career as a Conservative county councillor for South Glamorgan.

Hubert's mother was Irish, but he was by birth and by nature a true Yorkshireman. He was a devout Roman Catholic and a member of numerous Catholic organisations. He leaves three children (one a medical statistician) and eight grandchildren.


Emeritus professor of medical statistics University of Cardiff (b 1920; q Durham 1959; FRCP, FSS), died from a cerebrovascular accident on 7 October 2007.

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