City Alumni Network

Class of 1944 alumni return to City

Alumni Notice Board.

Alumni VisitLast month two City alumni from the class of 1944 returned to City University London to visit their old haunts. Jim Keat (right) and Nev Lees (left), both aged 85 and registered blind, made their journey here by way of the number 73 bus.

In 1944, City was still known as Northampton Engineering College and both men were sponsored by the Royal Navy to work on maintaining radar systems – something which was strictly top secret at the time!

Since leaving City, both Jim and Nev have remained firm friends and their time here continues to provide very special memories for them.

“The war was on, we were very bright young men, friendships were easily made and nostalgically kept.  It was delightful to be surrounded by such bright people and the lively learning environment of the University.”
Nev Lees and Jim Keat

After demobilisation from the Royal Navy, Jim spent his career teaching at the Cornwall Education Authority in subjects with an emphasis in technology. Jim has four children and currently resides in Cornwall, in the four-bedroom house he built beside the one where he was born.

Nev also has four children and like Jim, taught after leaving the Royal Navy. However, Nev had a career change after studying Aeronautical Engineering at Loughborough University and worked for the de Havilland Aircraft Company and then British Aerospace for 11 years. Following a spell at English Electric Computers and a year in Paris with an international consortium bidding for a large N.A.T.O. project, Nev opened his own business, which focussed on computer based management solutions for engineering businesses.

 If you would like to make contact with former friends or arrange a visit to the University then please contact the alumni office:

0 Responses to Class of 1944 alumni return to City

  1. Chas. A. R. Cook says:

    Congratulations to Jim and Nev. I don’t go back that far, but nevertheless being in my 70th year now I would love to hear from anyone reading this who was with me at “Northampton” between 1959 and 1963 studying for a Dip Tech in Electrical Engineering. You are all 70 plus now as I was one of the younger members of that cohort but hope like me some of you still keep in touch here with City as well..
    Best regards Chas. A. R. Cook

    • Hello Charles,

      If there is anyone in particular you are hoping to get in touch with the Alumni Office may be able to help. If so, please contact us via

      Look forward to hearing from you,

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  3. Debbie Okpala says:

    These gentlemen have demonstrated that enthsiasm for their Alumni has not diminished with their age. We have a lot to learn from their zest for life. I am thrilled to read their stories. Thank you both

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.

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