Honouring Derek

On the 28th September, we celebrated the opening of the newly renamed ‘Derek Davies Law Library’, in honour of our Founding Law Fellow, Derek. The Master, joined by Mrs Margaret Davies and a handful of Derek’s closest friends and supporters, visited the library to raise a toast to Derek. We are thrilled that over £220,000 has been raised in Derek’s name, which is a real testament to the incredible impact that he had on his students and the College.

Derek took his first law degree at the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth in 1951. In 1954, his former tutor at New College, Jack (later Lord) Butterworth, told Derek that St Catherine’s Society intended to elect a Tutor in Law, and that he would support an application for the job. Derek went on to become the College’s first Tutor in Law. Derek had an incredibly active role during his time at the College – he was Pro-Master during Alan Bullock’s tenure as Vice-Chancellor and again in the interregnum period between Lord Bullock’s retirement and Sir Patrick Nairne’s appointment. Derek retired in 1996 and was elected to an Emeritus Fellowship, having taught at St Catherine’s for forty-two years.

As a College we are incredibly proud that St Catz admits a greater number of students to study Law than most other Colleges, with an annual intake of around 10 undergraduates and 10 graduates. We hope that our current, and future, Law students will relish in their studies and careers – under the wisdom that Derek’s name still imposes on the College.

Visit this page if you wish to make a donation towards the Derek Davies Memorial Fund, which honours Derek’s memory by helping to preserve the high quality of our tutorial teaching in Law.

To find out what one of Derek’s former students is doing now, read our article Legal Successes for Catz Alums.