Members at our 2007 BBQ

Naturalists' Society

Cymdeithas Naturiaethwyr



Douglas Anthony Bassett BSc, PhD, F.G.S. (1927-2009) 108th President

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Douglas Basset (known as D.A.B. to many) was educated at the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, gaining his degree in Geology in 1952 and then his doctorate in the same discipline. From 1952 to 1959 he taught in the Geology Department at Glasgow University whilst studying the rocks of north and mid-Wales, especially in the Bala district in collaboration with Professors Alwyn Williams and Harry Whittington. He came back to Wales and joined the National Museum of Wales as Keeper of Geology in 1959 (taking over from F. J. North 56th President. He was appointed as Director in 1977 and remained in that post until ill-health forced him to retire in 1985. it is noteworthy that he was the first Welsh-speaking Director the Museum had had since receiving its charter in 1907.

Douglas Anthony Bassett courtesy of National Museum of Wales

Douglas Anthony Bassett courtesy of National Museum of Wales

His passion in science was geology and he was Founder Chairman 1960-62, Editor 1965-1974, and Honorary Member 1986 of the South Wales Geologists' Association which he helped found.

The key publication of that group during his time as Editor was the Welsh Geological Quarterly which is now available on-line as part of the South Wales Geologists' Association 50 Year Archives 1960-2010

Douglas Bassett was made a White-robed Member of the Gorsedd of Bards of the Isle of Britain in 1979 and an Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et Lettres from the Ministry of Culture, Paris in 1983. He received the Wollaston Fund of the Geological Society in 1985, the 1985 Aberconway Medal of the Institution of Geologists; the Silver Medal of the Czechoslavakian Society for International Relations, 1985; the Ivorite Award of 2008 for his American-Welsh work.

Postscript: -

Sadly, Doug Bassett was to be the last Director of the National Museum of Wales to be a president of this society as his successor David Dykes oversaw a reduction in the oversight of bodies such as the Cardiff Naturalists' with a massive reduction in the membership of the Museum Council. This author can only express regret in that action as it has divided the Museum from its historical foundings to the extent that few museum staff and some museum publications on it's history have sadly not realised the part that this society played.

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Before this... Professor Harold K. Lloyd B.Sc., Ph.D., C.Eng., F.I.M. (?-1995) 107th President

Next up... Alan Roy Perry (1938-2014) 109th President

See our Full list of Presidents

These pages are part of the Cardiff Naturalists' Society 150th Anniversary celebrations and are about our history and are celebrating the people who developed our Society and helped build the city and the cultural heritage of Cardiff. You can read more about that using the links above

If you want to read about the ways we study the wildlife and environment of the Cardiff area and its surroundings, and about the talks we have about the wildlife of the world, and find the programme of talks, walks and other events that we do then please take a look at our main website, our blog and our facebook and twitter feeds for up to date news