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Biffen, Sir Rowland Harry (1874–1949), geneticist and agricultural botanist, was born on 28 May 1874 at Cheltenham, the eldest of the family of two boys and three girls of Henry John Biffen, headmaster of the Christ Church higher grade school at Cheltenham, and his wife, ...

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Bunting, Arthur Hugh (1917–2002), crop scientist, was born on 7 September 1917 in Johannesburg, South Africa, the elder son (there were no daughters) of Sidney Percival Bunting (1873–1936), solicitor, and his wife, Rebecca, née Notlowitz, a Jewish émigrée from Russia. His great-great-grandfather was ...

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Guthrie, Frederick (1833–1886), chemist and physicist, was born on 15 October 1833 in Bayswater, London, youngest of the six children of Alexander Guthrie (1800-1858), a master tailor and draper in New Bond Street, and his wife Kitty née Thompson (1791-1869...

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See Guthrie, Frederick

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Harland, Sydney Cross (1891–1982), agricultural botanist and geneticist, was born on 19 June 1891 at Snainton, near Scarborough, the son of Erasmus Harland and his wife, Eliza. He was educated at the municipal secondary school in Scarborough and at King's College, London, where he graduated in 1912 with honours in geology. He then took a job as a schoolmaster in the Danish colony of ...

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Sir William Kershaw Slater (1893–1970) by Walter Stoneman, 1951 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Slater, Sir William Kershaw (1893–1970), chemist and agricultural administrator, was born in Oldham on 19 October 1893, the only child of James Slater (d. 1922), cotton mill manager, and his wife, Mary Ann Kershaw, who came from a Yorkshire farming family. As a child, he suffered severely from asthma, and on his doctor's recommendation was sent to live with the proprietor of a small private school in ...

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Spedding, Sir Colin Raymond William (1925–2012), biologist and agricultural scientist, was born on 22 March 1925 at 54 Alport Road, Cannock, Staffordshire, the younger son and second of three children of Robert Kewley Spedding (1890–1961), Primitive Methodist minister, and his wife, Ilynn, née...

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Stapledon, Sir (Reginald) George (1882–1960), grassland scientist, was born at Lakenham, Northam, Devon, on 22 September 1882. He was the sixth of seven children of William Stapledon, master mariner and shipping agent, and his second wife, Mary, daughter of William Clibbert, shipbuilder. He also had three half siblings. He was profoundly influenced by his mother's reverence for nature, but uninspired by his time at the ...

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Sir (Reginald) George Stapledon (1882–1960) by Walter Stoneman, 1940 © National Portrait Gallery, London