Nottingham Hospitals History

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John Edwin Forde Bruce


President of the Nottingham Medico-Chirurgical Society

1979 – 1998


Educationally in the late 90s the years in which the Colleges were introducing formal continuing education and many pessimists within the profession saw no future for the long established local Medical Societies. How wrong they were! John Bruce, a popular and enthusiastic President, set the seal on the Society by introducing, during his year of office, a programme of speakers of the highest quality who were able to both educate and entertain. The Nottingham Medico-Chirurgical Society showed itself again to be a unique forum where hospital consultants, family doctors and academics could meet to enjoy good fellowship and continuing medical education for their mutual benefit.


John Bruce was born in Doncaster, and educated at Rossall School, Fleetwood and St Mary's Hospital Medical School London from which he qualified as Member of the Royal College of Surgeons and Licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians and MB. BS. In 1962. During his student years he was a familiar role rugby footballer, representing St Mary's when it was a top-class club within the UK.


After various house appointments at Harold Wood Hospital, Essex and St Mary's he embarked on training in the Obstetrics and Gynaecology in an enviable series of posts that including appointment as Senior House Officer at the Hammersmith Hospital, Registered Medical Officer at the Samaritan Hospital for Women and Queen Charlotte's Maternity Hospital, Registrar at St Mary's and Senior Registrar at Kings College Hospital London. Along the way he became Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons (England) in 1967 and a Member of the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology in 1970.


With such a pedigree it came as no surprise when he was appointed Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist together with clinical teaching at the Nottingham City Hospital in 1975. In Nottingham he developed a special interest in vagina or surgery and uro-gynaecology with, more recently endoscopic and minimal access surgery. The new Teaching Units in Nottingham offered many opportunities to hone his already well-developed teaching skills at undergraduate, postgraduate and General Practice levels. He became an examiner for the Central Midwives Board, the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board and the membership of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.


Joining the Nottingham Medico-Chirurgical Society at an early stage John Bruce became secretary in the late 1980s and its President in 1997/98. A generous host, he was much supported during his Presidency by his wife Bryana, a Senior Partner in General Practice in the Town.


But what of the man himself? Professionally John Bruce was committed to the speciality and his adopted city. No doctor is without fault and it has to be said that John was not the most punctual of men – even his addiction to fast cars did not always ensure that he arrived everywhere on time. Even late though, he was always good value! He loved his sport, following rugby football, skiing in the winter and playing golf at Hollinwell and Beeston Fields. Fellow golfers report that he arrives at the first tee still only half dressed and then goes on to win! Certainly a man for all seasons.


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