Gerard Simpson

Gerard was born in Cottingham and started violin lessons at the age of seven. During schooldays in Hull, he played in five Youth Orchestras and frequently played chamber music. He studied Mathematics and Statistics at Birmingham University – but with his violin was treated as an honorary member of the music department.

He trained to be a teacher (Exeter and Truro), and taught mathematics at Archbishop Holgate’s Grammar School, York (1966-71) and Ampleforth College (1971-2004). Violin playing was always important and he has played in the York Guildhall Orchestra (from 1980 foundation to current) and the Helmsley/Ryedale Festival Orchestras (1981-1995).

His extra-curricular involvement at the College involved music and outdoor activities, including potholing, sailing and mountaineering (Scotland, Arctic Norway, Iceland and Kashmir amongst the destinations). From 1993 he was the College time-tabler and the examinations officer. Following retirement from the classroom he stayed to manage the running of the examination rooms until 2010. Proper retirement was a chance to put back into the musical world some thanks for support received over many years.

A gentle start with the Ryedale Festival (just giving a little help!) led him to greater and greater involvement: artist transport, health and safety, volunteer co-ordinator and then trustee. Gerard lives in Oswaldkirk.