My friend and colleague John Harvey, who has died aged 80, was not only an expert in ocean physics, but also a keen climber and outdoor activity leader.
In 1968 John was among the first group of lecturers in the interdisciplinary school of environmental sciences at the recently established University of East Anglia (UEA) in Norwich. There he taught physical oceanography to generations of students.
He wrote a remarkable book, Atmosphere and Ocean: Our Fluid Environments (1976), which was ahead of its time in introducing students to the idea that the two should not be studied as single subjects, but needed to be viewed as interacting parts of the global system.
He carried out expert research into the circulation of the North Atlantic, which showed how Atlantic water masses could be identified by their temperature and salinity characteristics. Some regarded this as a rather traditional approach, but within a decade it was back in vogue in interpreting the findings of the major international global survey carried out as part of the World Ocean Circulation Experiment.
He was brought up in Irby on the Wirral peninsula by his parents, Eddie Harvey, a manager’s secretary with the Blue Funnel Line shipping company, and his wife, Marjorie (nee Ward), a teacher. After attending Dawpool school and then Birkenhead school, John studied geography at Liverpool University, and then took a job as a physical oceanographer at the Fisheries Laboratory (now Cefas) in Lowestoft, Suffolk.
After a few years he was appointed a lecturer at the Marine Science Laboratories on Anglesey, a part of the then University College of North Wales, Bangor (now Bangor University), where I first met him while participating in a summer school on oceanography that he was teaching. He inspired me to take up a career in marine science.
In 1989 John took early retirement from UEA to embark on another challenge, leading outdoor activity holidays (mountaineering, navigation and sailing), with his wife, Chris, from the centre they established overlooking Loch Lomond. They both also led walking holidays in Europe and John additionally led some bridge and skiing holidays.
John was an accomplished hill walker and climber, having scaled all 282 of the Munro mountains in Scotland, completing the challenge in 2003. He was also a keen sailor and, again with Chris, circumnavigated the British Isles.
On their return to East Anglia in 2004, to Brooke in south Norfolk, John was an active and enthusiastic orienteer who liked to enthuse others. Latterly he assisted with running local health walks.
During the last decade of his life John suffered from myeloma and faced its treatment with typical fortitude.
He is survived by Chris (nee Evans), whom he married in 1961, their sons, Robert and Michael, and grandchildren, Kate and David.