In Memorium Neil Bickerstaff

04 January 2024 - In Memorium Neil Bickerstaff

We’re sorry to share the sad news of Neil Bickerstaff’s unexpected passing last month, Neil will be missed by his many friends across the UCISA community and will always be remembered fondly.

Mark Johnston (Director of IT, University of Glasgow) has said the following, in memory of Neil: 

Over the last ~5 years, I have spent many an evening with Neil, and I always looked forward to catching up with him. He was delighted to get the Director of IT job at Cardiff, then the interim CIO role when Eileen retired in July. To see him proudly report he had been promoted to CIO (with his cheeky, happy, smiling face) is how I will remember Neil - nothing but goodness in his heart. Rest in peace, mate.

John Cartiwrght (former Director of IT, University of Liverpool) said:

News of Neil’s passing in December 23 came as a great shock and with huge sadness to me and I expect to the many members of the HE community that knew him. I had the pleasure of working closely with Neil at the University of Liverpool for over 12 years and he was an important member of my senior management team when I retired. I was extremely proud of Neils progression to CIO at Cardiff and had the opportunity to catch up with him in December – he was revelling in his new role and totally committed to his team and the University of Cardiff. Rest in Peace Neil, you will be sorely missed.

David Telford (Executive Director, University of Stirling)

Neil was not just a colleague but a cherished friend to us all. His generosity and readiness to collaborate were nothing short of legendary, matched only by his ever-present smile and good humour, even in the face of those continual sector challenges we all face. We know Neil to have been a valued member of the team at Liverpool, during which Neil's profound knowledge and expertise greatly enriched CISG and the education sector. His subsequent move to Cardiff was a testament to his recognised expertise and leadership. His contributions continued to shine at ucisa, particularly during our recent visit to educause in Chicago, where he skilfully navigated complex vendor discussions with his innate charm and impressive negotiating skills. On a personal note, I recall long discussions on everything from IT service, security, projects and leadership where he often talked of developing others and looking to bring out the best in people. His absence will be deeply felt by myself and all who had the privilege of knowing him. Our thoughts are with his family, friends, and colleagues during this difficult time, as we reflect on the profound impact he has left in our hearts and in our professional world.