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Phil Hollom , 1912 – 2014

Peterson et alPeterson guide

A field guide for the generations – A field guide to the birds of Britain and Europe by Roger Peterson, Guy Mountfort, P.A.D. Hollom – first published by Collins in 1954 (left) and republished as recently as as 2004 (right).

We are very sad learn of the passing of Phil Hollom, who passed away on Friday, 20 June, aged 102.

One of Britain’s best known birdwatchers and authors, Phil is known to generations of British birdwatchers since it was his field guide (above right) many grew up with and from which they honed their birding skills. His other publications included The Great Crested Grebe Enquiry 1931 (1932), The Popular Handbook of British Birds (1954), Trapping Methods for Bird Ringers (BTO Guide No. 1) (1955), The Popular Handbook of Rarer British Birds (1960) and Birds of the Middle East and North Africa (1988).

Phil was a contemporary of some of our other great British birdwatchers and ornithologists, including Harry Witherby, James Ferguson-Lees and Max Nicholson, taking over from the latter as editor of British Birds in 1960. He was the first Chairman of the British Birds Rarities Committee (BBRC), a former Vice President of Ornithological Society of the Middle East (OSME) and was awarded the BTO’s Tucker Medal in 1954.

The BOU’s longest-ever serving member (81 years), Phil joined the Union aged 21 in 1933, served on its Council from 1960-63 and in 1984 was awarded the BOU’s Union Medal for his outstanding contribution to the BOU and to ornithology (citation below from Ibis 109: 621).

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