John Richard Hatton 1945-2014 (Leaver 1962)
Richard was born in Crosby in 1945 and attended Merchant Taylors’ School there.
His interest in music began at an early age and he learned to play viola (possibly with A. D. Ashcroft). However, it was science subjects which formed his main ‘A’ levels, in addition to music. He studied chemistry at Nottingham University and did research in organic chemistry. This was followed by 2 years as a research supervisor at Liverpool University.
Meantime, he played viola in various orchestras, starting with Liverpool Youth Orchestra, and moving on to a mixture of orchestras when at Nottingham.
He came to North Wales in 1971 when he started work as a Research and Development Chemist at Peboc, Llangefni, Anglesey. He remained there until 2002 when he took redundancy/early retirement.
We met through a shared interest in hill walking and married in 1978. Richard enjoyed sea-fishing and trout fishing, often during holidays in Wales. His piscatorial interests led to him joining a local Marine Science Group who were monitoring marine life in the Menai Straits. This work led to the group receiving, at Buckingham Palace, the Duke of Edinburgh’s prize of the British sub-aqua club in 1990.
In the 1980s, he joined Bangor University’s extra-mural orchestra, playing viola and then bassoon. When a local wind-band was formed, he joined this, playing firstly bassoon and then flute/alto flute. Once he’d taken early retirement, he began arranging music for wind ensembles, eventually on a professional basis. The high point of this work was hearing his own arrangement performed by Bloomsbury Winds at St John’s, Smith Square, London.
Richard coped magnificently with his final illness which was cancer. He was a warm, loving, caring husband (I have had M.E. for many years). His wit and humour kept us feeling ‘upbeat’ during difficult times. He died on 25th October 2014.
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