TRIBUTES have been paid to a respected professor, author and political historian who died suddenly in hospital.
Professor Duncan Tanner, who was director of Research and a professor of History at Bangor University, passed away last Thursday at Ysbyty Gwynedd in Bangor. He was 51.
The cause of his death is currently unknown, though it was revealed he suffered from a pre-existing heart condition. Bangor University vice-chancellor Merfyn Jones said: “Duncan was a highly regarded academic as well as an extremely popular and well-liked friend and colleague to many at Bangor and beyond.
“An expert on Labour and political history, he had published widely and was regarded as the foremost authority on the history of Welsh devolution.
“In addition to being a Professor of History at Bangor, he was also a Director of Research at the University.
“His death is an immense loss to the university and to historical research.”
The Newport-born father-of-two, who lived in Llandegfan, Anglesey, with his wife Christine, achieved a first-class degree in modern history and politics at Royal Holloway College, University of London, where he graduated in 1979.
He then went on to study for his PhD at University College London in 1985.
After teaching at the University of Kent for a year, he returned to Wales to become a lecturer at Bangor University, where he remained for more than 20 years.
In 1990, he was awarded the Royal Historical Society’s Whitfield Prize for his first book, Political Change, and the Labour Party 1900-1918, published in 1990, after which he co-edited two volumes.
Secretary of State for Wales Peter Hain, who visited Bangor University yesterday, also paid his respects to the Professor.
Mr Hain said: “Professor Tanner was a distinguished political historian.
“He was well respected by all who knew and worked with him. He will be sorely missed.”
A celebration of Professor Tanner’s life is due to take place at the University’s PJ Hall.