We are very sorry to bring the sad news that Professor Mike Bassett died recently after a long illness. Mike was one of the earliest members of the Geological Curators’ Group and had been a great supporter of the group throughout its history.
Mike gained his BSc at Emmanuel College, Cambridge and then his PhD at University College, Swansea, before joining the National Museum of Wales in October 1967 as Assistant Keeper of Geology. Ten years later he was promoted to the post of Keeper, which he held until his retirement in 2008. He was also Honorary Professor and lecturer at Cardiff University, and held many roles within the South Wales Geologists’ Association. He had served on many national and international geological committees, and was influential in establishing the five ‘Earth Science Collection Centres’ following the Earth Science Review of the late 1980s. He received a number of awards in recognition of his research and was a renowned expert on Palaeozoic brachiopods and stratigraphy, with a large number of books and papers to his name. Within the National Museum of Wales he was responsible for bringing in many major exhibitions, such as the ground-breaking Dinosaurs from China in 1986, and the award-winning Evolution of Wales exhibition. He raised the international profile of the department, creating research links with Uppsala as well as China, and was not hesitant about carrying out remote fieldwork in many far-flung countries. Many older members of GCG will have fond memories of working with him.