|..Click An Image To Visit Society Website|
Ted Trueman made a major contribution to malacology. His first paper, in 1949, was on the hinge ligament of Angulus (Tellina) tenuis, and bivalve hinge ligaments were the main concern of his research through the 1950's. In the 1960's he was among the first to see the potential of the Physiograph recording system for molluscan and other studies, and with a string of research students (myself included) he worked on marine and freshwater bivalves and marine gastropods. He had a refreshing hands-off approach to his students and all were encouraged to do their own thing and, within limits, let their curiosity lead where it may. Not for him the present-day regimented and directed supervision. Studies ranged from feeding and behavioural rhythms in bivalves, through locomotory mechanisms and dynamics of bivalves, gastropods and cephalopods to circulatory mechanisms and physiological measurements in situ. His work on bivalve locomotion is particularly noteworthy, as is his work on jet propulsion of cephalopods. His interests extended beyond molluscs to annelids, medusae, siphonophores, crustacea and salps. If there was one theme that ran through all this it was locomotion, and this culminated in 1975 with the publication of his book, The Locomotion of Soft-bodied Animals (Edward Arnold). He published over 100 papers and contributed many review chapters. He edited or co-edited several review volumes including three of the twelve volumes of The Mollusca (Ed. K. M. Wilbur, 1983-8). He was President of the Malacological Society of London from 1979-81.
He was an inspiring teacher. His lectures on bivalve burrowing and on jet propulsion were particularly stimulating and well received by undergraduates. He did not hesitate to use his own latest 16 mm film, taken for research purposes, to illustrate his lectures, and first year students particularly were impressed that a Professor would show his latest research material to them and would talk so enthusiastically (always without notes) about his latest work. As a head of department he was always approachable and generally sympathetic to staff and student alike, though like all good managers he was not afraid to make unpopular decisions if he deemed them necessary for the good of the department. His philosophy was to try and build a balanced department with a broad range of interests.
Ted did not seem to have many hobbies, his work was his hobby. But, after his family had fledged, he and Doreen would every year take their caravan to France for some weeks, sometimes near to a marine laboratory to do some work, but often to the same site in Provence and just write. He usually came back with several papers written each summer. His one relaxation on these trips was watercolour painting, mostly of scenery, and some of these are quite charming.
Ted Trueman came from an academic family. His father, A. E. Trueman, was a geologist of note, Vice-chancellor of the University of Glasgow and first Chairman of the University Grants Committee. After school in Bristol, Ted studied zoology at the University of Glasgow where he came under the influence of C. M. Yonge who instilled in him the interest and enthusiasm for marine biology in general and for molluscs in particular that remained all Ted's life. He graduated in 1942 and immediately entered the RAF as a ground radar operator, serving mostly on the South coast. During this service he met and married his wife Doreen. In 1946 he was appointed Assistant Lecturer in Zoology at the University (then College) of Hull. There he served in various capacities, eventually Reader, including Dean of Science at the age of 32! In 1969 he was effectively head-hunted as Professor of Zoology at the University of Manchester. He retired in 1982 (just before major and catastrophic upheaval in Biological Sciences) at the sensible age of 60. He moved near to Plymouth where he enjoyed the facilities of the MBA and continued to publish extensively, particularly with collaborators in South Africa, which he visited frequently and for extended periods. In recent years he lived near Aylesbury but had not enjoyed good health.
He is survived by his wife, Doreen, two daughters Anne and Susan and several grandchildren.
School of Biological Sciences, University of Manchester