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Getting to know…Professor John Latham

In our homes, the incredible life stories and fascinating characters of our residents are respected, admired and celebrated.

There’s so much we can learn from those who live with us, which is why we’re continuing our ‘My Story’ series. Speaking with residents and sharing their amazing stories and colourful experiences.

Today, we want to introduce you to one of our residents, Professor John Latham, 81, who came to live at Lisburne Court following a vascular dementia diagnosis. Described as a ‘perfect gentleman’ by the staff; behind his humble demeanour is one of the most exciting minds our country has produced.

A lifelong academic, and the first of his family (originally from Frodsham in Cheshire) to go to University, Professor Latham has made ground-breaking contributions to the field of atmospheric sciences.

John founded the UMIST (University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology) Atmospheric Physics Research Group, the forerunner to the Centre for Atmospheric Science, in 1961.

During his time at UMIST he made significant contributions to the understanding of thunderstorm electrification, warm rain production, and cloud glaciation processes, he also served as head of the UMIST Physics Department on several occasions.

The international research group has made many important discoveries and continues to build on Professor Latham’s research, which he started later in his career, on how to off-set global warming caused by increased CO2 emissions.

In honour of his incredible work, Manchester University named the Latham Laboratories after John and installed a commemorative plaque to thank him for his contribution to these global issues.

John still keeps in touch with his colleagues from across the world to discuss the latest developments in his professional field.

It is not just in his professional life that John has been incredibly successful. He began writing poetry and fiction as a hobby, and has published a number of novels and poetry anthologies. He continues to write, and Lisburne Court will now play host to his regular poetry meetings with fellow writers.

John is father to four children: Becky, David, Rob and Mike. Sadly, Rob and Mike both passed away a number of years ago. He also has seven grandchildren and one great grandchild. It is his great pleasure to spend time with his friends and family, and he absolutely loves the company of his grandchildren.

We’ll be sharing more incredible stories like John’s in our latest News section over the coming months. If your family member would like to be part of our My Story series, we’d love to hear from you. Email