Ken Seal was born on 14 September 1922 in Sheffield. He studied pharmacy at Nottingham University but his studies were interrupted by the Second World War where the imposed lottery system resulted in him becoming a ‘Bevin Boy’ and so he spent the later war years down a mine. After the war he qualified and took up a post with the North Middlesex Hospital before spells at the Montagu Hospital in Mexborough, the Derbyshire Children’s Hospital and Sheffield Royal Infirmary. He then had a long period as a representative for Burroughs Wellcome & Co in Sheffield.
In the 1960s he joined other pharmacists in Sheffield to form a consortium company ‘Group Pharmacies Ltd’ to run a city centre pharmacy. From there he went on to purchase another Sheffield pharmacy that traded under the name ‘Exell Brothers’. His passion for working with other pharmacists again came to the fore when he and Peter Reynolds formed a partnership to run that pharmacy.
I first met Ken in the mid 1970s while he was an established member of the Sheffield Local Pharmaceutical Committee. He went on to successfully chair that organisation and was a representative on many other Sheffield and regional health committees. Under his leadership the Sheffield Local Pharmaceutical Committee successfully fought to keep a district pharmaceutical officer and went on to develop a whole range of pharmacy services for the city. In 1999, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society recognised his contribution to community pharmacy by awarding him a Fellowship.
Ken went on to form another partnership with pharmacist David Green trading under the name of Greenseal Pharmacies. Nationally, his commercial talents were recognised when he was appointed as a director of the pharmaceutical wholesaler Unichem.
Outside pharmacy, Ken was a keen sports enthusiast and an excellent cricket umpire. He was also a very talented artist and sold a number of his watercolours via the John Lewis Partnership. In retirement he led a University of the Third Age (U3A) music appreciation group and travelled extensively around the world by boat, train, car and coach rather than by air.
Ken died in Broomgrove Nursing Home, Sheffield, on 4 December 2015. He leaves his wife, Margaret, and sons, David and Peter, and their families. He continued to have an interest in pharmacy matters until quite recently. He will be missed.