The name Tom Jones may be immediately associated with a famous international singing star, but, Thomas Ivor Jones rose to fame as a leading chemist in the Manchester area.
After receiving his BSc from Imperial College London in 1956, as an external student, he continued his studies in the chemistry department at The Royal Technical College Salford. He studied under the guidance of Dr Joan Bond, a leading figure in the field of polymer technology and received his PhD in 1959.
He returned to active chemistry studies in the research and development laboratories of the Swiss company Geigy and later CIBA- Geigy. Using his polymer knowledge, generated from his academic studies, he was the first chemist to synthesize the homo polymer of maleic anhydride, a process at the time that was deemed an impossible task.
Polymaleic acid and its salts have since become world leading products for the inhibition of calcium carbonate scale in industrial cooling water applications and magnesium hydroxide inhibition in the higher temperature multistage desalination plants primarily throughout the Middle East.
In his role of development chemist he also got involved with many of the Geigy business activities especially textiles and pigments, with excursion into pharmaceuticals. His involvement in these areas resulted in the successful granting of many patent claims.
Dr Jones was the backbone of the Society of Chemical Industry for the Manchester section, acting as secretary and occasionally chairman.
In later times Dr Jones was successfully employed as a Consultant helping many chemical companies with their technical problems, which, often involved overseas travel. He was also a founder member of CICA, Chemical Industries Consultants Association.
Apart from his chemical achievements Dr Jones was a very active and competitive athlete. He reached county level in tennis and hockey and was a very competitive adversary on the squash court.
Once these active sports became too exhaustive he took up walking and formed the 'Wednesday Walkers', who were primarily a group of ex industrial chemists who enjoyed the country side of the Derbyshire dales.
With all the expounded calories lost during the walk the day was concluded with a little libation at the various 'inns' around the area.
Dr Jones made many, many friends in both his business career and social life. He will be sadly missed by all who had the privilege to know him.