Bruce Denness was born on the Isle of Wight, UK, where he grew up on a farm before graduating as a civil engineer and later becoming an engineering geologist. Subsequent periods at the British Geological Survey and the University of Newcastle upon Tyne enabled him to travel widely at home and throughout the developing world, working on projects ranging from landslip prevention and stabilisation, through coastal pollution prevention and climate forecasting, to optimising ecosystems. Since the early 1980s he has been an independent environmental consultant.
After 50-odd years of publishing scientific papers, Bruce seized on the lockdown imposed by the covid-19 pandemic as an opportunity to bring order to his haphazard filing system. Therein he came upon the series of press cuttings of letters that he had written to newspapers and scientific and professional publications that provide the fodder for this mini opus. However, upon re-reading them, it became clear that, in order to still make sense, they required additional background explanation and context. Hence this book.
Freed of the rigid strictures of scientific writing, here Bruce skips merrily through historical events, anecdotes, clichés, and cloudy memories, with scant regard for grammatical niceties. He enjoyed it and hoped you will too.
Why I Wrote wot I Wrote
As Joanna Lumley notes in her preface, Bruce Denness has always trod a precarious path between serious science and philosophical frivolity. The science reached its peak at the British Geological Survey and Newcastle University in the 1970s but even then – and certainly since – he always looked f...