Obituary: Hamish Barbour

Optometrist Hamish Barbour passed away in November

Hamish Barbour

OT is sad to report the death of optometrist Hamish Barbour, who died at the Mater Hospital, Belfast, on 13 November.

Remembering his friend, optometrist Alan Rundle shared: “Hamish began his optometric training at the Northampton Polytechnic (now City, University of London) whilst also attending the London Refraction Hospital.

“On completing this part of his training, he spent the first six months of his pre-registration year in Harrogate, Yorkshire, before returning to Belfast, and joining the independent optical practice of Harris Rundle.

“He subsequently joined his father in practice, and later took over the prestigious city centre practice of Murray and Abernethy.”

Rundle continued: “Hamish inherited his father’s interest in visual optics, and the mathematics which it embraced, and remained highly knowledgeable in this area throughout his career.

“From early on and throughout his career he involved himself with committee work, subsequently becoming president of the Northern Ireland Optical Society, and chairman of the Northern Ireland Negotiating Committee, which involved negotiating with the regional health services, an often demanding position.

“For many years, Hamish was also the Northern Ireland representative at the Association of Optometrists. Throughout this time, he was always regarded as an important contributor, often being the Devil’s advocate, warning against problems that might ensue if a new initiative were to be adopted. He was often proved to be right.

“His leisure time involved an interest in DIY, especially maintaining his beautiful house on the shores of Belfast Lough. He had a passion for sailing and was a prominent member of Carrickfergus Sailing Club. In general, he had a love for the great outdoors, living close to the wonderful Glens of Antrim.”

Hamish is survived by his wife Brenda, his two sons, Ian and Paul, his daughter Michelle, and his grandchildren, Ellen, Bronte, Alexander, Isaac and Rory.