Frederick Dainton

Frederick Dainton (1914-1997), physical chemist, followed wartime work on a range of projects, particularly in the area of incendiaries and explosions with significant contributions to the understanding of reaction mechanisms and kinetics at the universities of Cambridge and Leeds.  At Leeds he built up a strong school of physical chemistry and was much in demand as a consultant to industry. In 1965 he moved to Nottingham as Vice-chancellor, attracted by the opportunity to establish a new medical school with an innovative curriculum.  In subsequent years he served as Dr Lee’s Professor of Chemistry at Oxford  and as chair of the University Grants Committee, as well as sitting on several government committees, notably the Advisory Council on Science Policy and later the Advisory Board for the Research Councils.  This service continued after his retirement, during which he chaired both the National Radiological Protection Board and the British Library Board.  As a member of the House of Lords he served as a member of the Select Committee on Science and Technology.

  • Birth name Frederick Sydney Dainton
  • Born 1914, Sheffield
  • Occupation Chemist
  • Disciplines Chemistry
  • Education University of Oxford, University of Cambridge

Related Audio Clips

The following clips are short extracts from an in-depth interview.
To listen to the full interview visit

Related themes

Related disciplines