Stephen Hawking: Harrogate residents pay tribute to renowned physicist

Tributes have been paid by Harrogate residents to the renowned British physicist Professor Stephen Hawking who died this week at the age of 76.

Professor Hawking, famed for his research in to black holes and relativity, died at his home in Cambridge on Wednesday (March 14).

Following the news David Cook, Chair of the Harrogate Astronomical Society paid respect to his memory, saying the icon of the scientific world would never be forgotten.

He said: “It is easy to think that the mind and body go together but he demonstrated that the mind can soar beyond the confines of the body. Stephen was renowned in his field of theoretical physics, cosmology and relativity.”

He added: “He joins the ranks of scientists with their names attached to scientific phenomena – Hawking Radiation – and thus he will continue to be remembered for all time.”

In his autobiography ‘My Brief History’, Hawking wrote on his family’s roots as tenant farmers in Yorkshire. His great-grandfather, John Hawking, was declared bankrupt following the agricultural depression at the beginning of the the twentieth century.

His son Robert was also made bankrupt attempting to help his father. However, his wife owned a house in Boroughbridge where she also ran a school.

They managed to save enough to send Professor Hawking’s father to Oxford where he would study medicine.