Dr Guy Fletcher
Dr Guy Fletcher

Vale Dr Guy Fletcher (1938-2015)

Words by Dr James Cresser

It is with great sadness that I announce the death of Dr Guy Fletcher who passed away on 27 March 2015. He was one of the earliest academic staff members of both the Physics Department and of Macquarie University itself.

Guy joined Macquarie as a Lecturer in January 1967. He graduated with an MA Honours in Physics and Mathematics from Cambridge University, UK in 1961 and prior to joining Macquarie, he was Head of Physics at Canford, a leading public school in England.

At Macquarie, Guy became a key member of the biophysics group in the Physics Department and subsequently completed his PhD in this area in 1975. Guy’s time at Macquarie was one of great development and change for our institution with its growth into a major Australian university. In the 1990s, with colleague Dr John Robertson, he developed the first computer-based enrolment system for Macquarie’s then School of Mathematics, Physics, Computing and Electronics which was later expanded to become a University-wide system, in use for all Macquarie University student enrolments until 2000.

Guy retired from Macquarie after three decades of dedicated academic contribution in 1997. He was a meticulous experimentalist and successful in winning Australian Research Council grant funding for his research in the 1980s. Guy was also an outstanding lecturer. Students he taught liked him for his clear expositions and he was much appreciated by staff whom he very helpfully mentored.

He also had wider teaching influence. During a period of study leave at the Open University (UK) in the 1970s, he developed some of their earlier physics courses at a time when they were beginning to televise lectures.

Guy’s practical and theoretical skills extended outside the University to a lifelong interest in amateur radio. He was a foundation member of the Hornsby and District Amateur Radio Club and more recently was involved with moon-bounce experiments and bouncing radio signals off aircraft as a means of long-distance communication.

He led a very active life, including involvement in tennis, bushwalking, sailing and music. In recent years he continued his travels and interests despite periods of ill health.

Those at Macquarie who worked with Guy will greatly miss him. The Department of Physics and Astronomy extends its condolences to Guy’s wife, Catherine, and family members.