15 June 2012
Left The Times open on the kitchen counter today as I left, at the obituary pages. But had missed the obituary for John Davidson, who I had meant to write to after I sat next to current Groundwork CEO Sir Tony Hawkhead at a recent Impetus Trust dinner. I hadn't realised John was so ill.
I knew him first through his wife Joan, who taught me when I was at the UCL School of Environmental Studies, between 1972 and 1974. She was one of two university lecturers (the other at Essex) who told me I would be a writer.
Every time I drive past what is now the Holidat Inn by the entry to Heathrow, I recall Joan taking a group of us up onto the roof of the building to survey the ravaged Green Belt all around.
Later, I got to know John through Groundwork, where he asked me to do a project in the mid-1980s, developing a report on ways in which business could support Groundwork's environmental regeneration work. The phrase I coined for the title of the report was The Environmental Entrepreneurs. Nice to see John identified in the Times obituary as an environmental entrepreneur.