Son's tribute to lecturer father who was also keen sportsman
A FORMER engineering lecturer at the University of Derby has died aged 80.
Sydney Allanson taught students at the university for more than 35 years.
And he even continued lecturing after retirement, until the age of 73.
His son, Mark, 49, said: "Teaching was a great passion of his. He was a well-respected lecturer at the university."
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Mr Allanson was born on June 8, 1932, in Liverpool.
He attended school there before undertaking a mechanical engineering apprenticeship at Paton Calvert Ltd. He moved onto various other firms before becoming a chartered engineer in 1964.
He completed his teacher's certificate in 1966, which led him into teaching engineering at Runcorn Technology College in Cheshire.
He moved to Derby the same year and began teaching at the Derbyshire College of Higher Education, now the University of Derby. In 1974, he completed an MSc in Industrial Management at Loughborough University.
He retired from full-time teaching at the University of Derby in 1992 but continued part-time until 2004. He even taught his son, Mark, who nows works as a turbines engineer at Rolls-Royce, for three years from 1983.
Mark, of Saint George's Close, Allestree, said: "He was really into education and always wanted me and my brother, Stefan, to do well.
"He wanted to get everybody through the exam. His advice was always stay for the full duration of the exam, don't overrun questions and read the paper fully.
"One day, I came back from a HND exam and told him I hadn't answered all the questions on the paper. He couldn't believe it. I had to tell him it was a joke!"
From 1954 to 1956, Mr Allanson completed his National Service in the Army and was based at Honiton Barracks, in Devon.
Mark said: "He had the choice to go to Korea by boat, which was a five week journey, but, because he knew he had really bad sea-sickness, he decided to become a paratrooper instead.
"He did around 20 jumps. He had air-sickness as well and he almost had to be pushed out of the plane."
Mr Allanson enjoyed swimming, running, football, cricket, squash and tennis. He was a member of Duffield Squash Club and Derby Tennis Club from 1973 to 2006.
Mark said: "He was really interested in sport from an early age.
"He did a lot of swimming and running and played cricket and football.
"He was a very good footballer, he was centre-forward, although he never spoke about it. He loved squash, he beat me and my brother hands down when he was in his 50s."
Mr Allanson died of cancer on February 3 at the Royal Derby Hospital. Mark said his father was a "devoted family man" and adored his daughter-in-laws, Susan and Helen, as well as his eight grandchildren and great-granddaughter.
Mark said: "He was pragmatic and cheerful and would always have a smile on his face. He was a very helpful person and he will be sadly missed."