Nottingham Hospitals History



President of the Nottingham Medico-Chirurgical Society

1984 - 1985

James Nelson a well-known and respected Nottingham doctor was President of the Society for the 1984-1985 session.

He was born in Rathfriland, Co. Down, and educated at the Public Elementary School there, moving on to the Friends' School Lisburn later. He entered Queen's University Belfast from which he qualified MB BCh BAO in 1949, gaining the diplomas LRCP LRCS Ed, LRFPS (Glas) in the same year. He settled in Nottingham at an early stage in his career and was appointed to the City hospital and to the Children's Hospital where he gained an excellent grounding in paediatrics. This was to serve him well in his subsequent career.

He became a general practitioner in Sneinton, Nottingham, the birthplace of General Booth of Salvation Army fame. This was a busy inner city practice, based in later years at the Sneinton Health Centre, which was fortunate in having a doctor with Dr Nelson's expertise, able to deal with human life in all its aspects. He became involved in the psychiatric services of the City working as a clinical assistant at St Francis Hospital. With Dr Maurice Everton he was one of the first GPs in the area to have this close liaison with the psychiatric hospitals and the psycho-geriatric population.

An interest in medico-legal matters led Jimmy Nelson into police work and from 1954 to 1988 where he became Senior Police Surgeon to the Nottinghamshire Constabulary, where it was once said that one of his favourite occupations was “arguing with lawyers.” He obtained the Diploma in Medical Jurisprudence of the Society of Apothecaries of London in 1971.

From 1980 to 1992 he was physician in charge of the Nottingham BUPA Clinic.

Throughout his career James Nelson was held in high esteem by his patients and colleagues. He was always easily approachable and ready to help colleagues. His successful Presidency of the Society was characterised by excellent speakers, including the formidable Professor Sheila Sherlock, one of the few leaders of the profession to address the Society on more than one occasion. Those who were fortunate enough to enjoy the pre-lecture dinners will remember with pleasure Christine's hospitality and her cordon bleu cooking. Both are keen golfers - Christine pursuing her game with consummate skill and James with enthusiasm! Finally, James was well known for his prowess as hockey referee within the East Midlands.