Obituary:Clive Desmond Hutchinson (1949-1998)

Published on 01 July 1998 in Obituaries

In September 1965, an inexperienced and diffident schoolboy spent a week at Cape Clear Bird Observatory. Within the next couple of years, the callow youth had matured into one of Ireland’s most reliable observers, his notebooks filled with evocative sketches as well as solid descriptions, and he had been invited to join the Observatory’s Council. He loved Cape Clear Island both for its birds and for its people. He became the Observatory’s Report Editor in 1970, and then Chairman for 12 years from 1986. Reliable is perhaps the best single word to describe Clive Hutchinson. If he took on a job, it got done, and done well: both thoroughly and on time. That word is, however, inadequate by itself, for Clive was also the best companion one could select for any trip: not only well · 87. Clive Hutchinson (1949-1998) organised, but also constantly good- (Richard T. Mills) humoured, even when enjoying a good argument (no less than one would expect from a graduate in History and Political Science from Trinity College, Dublin). Islands were special to Clive. On one visit to the Blasket Islands, stranded (more like abandoned!) for a few extra days and squeezed with two companions into a small two-man tent, argument and debate about the ecology of Ireland’s birds filled the many hours sheltering from the Atlantic rain. There was very little room for manoeuvre, either in the tent or in the arguments with Clive. His chosen career was as a Chartered Accountant in a practice

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