Nigel Hepper’s school project reworked 70 years on

A fragment of Nigel Hepper's 1947 survey of Meanwood Marsh.

A fragment of Nigel Hepper’s 1947 survey of Meanwood Marsh.

Retired teacher Mark Smith of The Grammar School at Leeds (GSAL) has written an article for the 2016 issue of ‘Memento’, the school’s Memento magazine. Nearly seventy years on, he has re-surveyed Meanwood Marsh, previously mapped using string, pegs and a tape measure by late Kew Guild member and past-president F. Nigel Hepper in 1947 when studying at the school, then known as Leeds Grammar School.

Mark reports “The accuracy of Nigel Hepper’s original map was surprisingly good given the means he had to make it and, together with some impressive plant identification skills, indicates scientific attention to detail even at that early stage in his career. A record of ecological change has been possible due to the early enthusiasm of a Leeds Grammar School pupil.”

Nigel went on to apply these skills to his herbarium work and not least to his plant phenological recording in Leeds, Kew Gardens and at his home in Richmond, a body of work that is now of particular interest to Kew, Reading University and RHS Wisley.

In science, nothing properly written up goes to waste.

David Hepper (Nigel’s son)