My first interest in Canada was aroused when a schoolboy during WWII. I read John Buchan’s ( Lord Tweedsmuir-former Governor General) book on the early explorers-The Long Traverse.This made me yearn to see Canada. When living in Chicago my wife and I found Quebec a lovely place to holiday. A number of very clever Canadian students came to study with me in Cambridge and I visited Canada many times. Thus I love Canada and still visit every year.
When Vice-Chancellor of the University of Surrey I found a small plaque on the south side of Guildford Cathedral and was surprised to find that it was the only memorial within the UK to the many Canadians who fought and died with us during two world wars. So when Sir David Nicolson invited me to join theproject of making a memorial I was delighted.He asked me to consider a living memorial to supplement the magnificent edifice in Green Park-stil at the conceptual stage then. I joined in with alacrity. We had anumber of discussions of the form in which the limited funds should be spent in encouraging young people to foster a living and continuing relationship between Canadian youth and British youth. Eventually we settled on the present format of one – two students per year and I was able through my positon to set up a selection procedure via the good offfices of the Association of Commonwealth Universities and together with John Abell to devise the selection procedure. It was very exciting-Queeen Elizabeth the Queen Mother blessed the first two students and many interseting relatonships have been progressed in many different fields -including acrobatics!
Beside the fine monument in Green Park the scholarship progam has bee a great success and I hope that it will continue and grow to cement relatonships between our two countries in this age of globalisaton and internet communicaton.