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Professor Gervase Phinn

Honorary Doctorate - 2005

Author, radio and TV personality Gervase Phinn is considered one of Britain's most popular writers and is an acclaimed after dinner speaker.

His hilarious tales about life as a schools inspector in the Yorkshire Dales have inspired bestselling autobiographical novels, The Other Side of the Dale, Over Hill and Dale, Head Over Hills in the Dales and Up and Down in the Dales.

Gervase has dedicated most of his working life to learning, especially in the areas of reading, art and drama and is one of the University's most famous alumni.

The retired schools inspector from Rotherham was a teacher for 14 years until, in 1984, he became General Adviser for Language Development in Rotherham. Four years later he was appointed Senior General Inspector for English and Drama with North Yorkshire County Council and was subsequently made Principal Adviser for the county.

He is now a freelance lecturer and adviser, a consultant for the Open University, The Poetry Society and The Schools Curriculum and Assessment Council and Visiting Professor of Education at the University of Teeside.

Gervase is also the proud holder of an honorary doctor of letters at the University of Leicester, honorary fellow of the college of York St John and honorary fellow of the English Speaking Board (International).

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