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Temperley, J. (2000). Dr John Hunter Padel 1913-1999. Psychoanal. Psychother., 14(1):81-82.

(2000). Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, 14(1):81-82


Dr John Hunter Padel 1913-1999

Jane Temperley

John Padel was a man of many accomplishments: a classicist, a musician (he played the cello), a doctor, a scholar, a psychoanalyst, but preeminently he will be remembered as a great and gifted teacher of psychoanalysis.

He was born in Carlisle, where his father was headmaster of the grammar-school. He gained a scholarship to Queen's College Oxford, where he read Classical moderations and Greats. He then taught classics — like his father, making a particular contribution to grammar-school education. In 1950 he began retraining as a doctor at the Middlesex Hospital and went on to specialise in psychiatry and to train as a psychoanalyst.

From 1969 to 1977, he was Deputy Director of the London Clinic of Psycho-Analysis. From 1973 to 1979 he was a Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Psychiatry at the Maudsley, where he taught clinical psychotherapy, from 1966 to 1990 he taught on the training programme at the Institute of Psycho-Analysis — on Clinical Psychopathology, on Object Relations and Psychic Reality, on Winnicott, and on Early Applications of Psychoanalysis.

The generosity with which he contributed to clinical work and teaching activities of the Institute of Psycho-Analysis (which are unpaid) was characteristic of him. He was exceptionally facilitating to those at the start of their careers as psychotherapists or analysts, making referrals to them, and even on occasion sharing his own consulting-room.

It was as a teacher of psychoanalytic theory at the Tavistock Clinic that I first remember him, and it is in that context that his ability to communicate learning and an enthusiasm for his subject will have had the greatest effect on mental health professionals.

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