Born in Halton village, Runcorn, he was baptized and married at Trinity Methodist church, where he was an active member and regular worshipper and where his funeral took place. People had a tremendous respect for him, not just for his acaemic and sporting achievements, but that he was wise, full of integrity, loyal and generous of spirit, and one who never forgot his roots, treating them all with the same courtesy, kindness and genuine interest and remaining ‘our Fred’.
An engineering graduate from Liverpool University, he expected that his life’s work would be in engineering and started work with the English Electric Company in Rugby. In 1949 came the invitation to lecture in the department of mechanical engineering at Liverpool, where he became a research fellow and in 1966 was appointed Harrison Professor. For several years he was a member of the Propulsion Aerodynamics/Turbomachinery committee of the Aeronauical Research Council. At the same time he became more involved in the administration of the university - as dean of the faculty of engineering, chairman of the staffing committee, pro-vice chancellor and acting vice-chancellor. From 1987 to 1992 he was also the public orator.
His full and rewarding academic career was recognised when in 1989 he received the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws and in 1990 was appointed OBE. His work took him abroad to Malaysia and Hong Kong and he spent an academic year as visiting associate professor at Princeton University, New Jersey. He also became a governor at Rydal Penrhos School.
Throughout his life he was a good all-round sportsman. He was a proficient tennis player and represented the university at tennis, soccer, cricket and hockey and was later to play Rugby Union for Warrington and for Newbold-on-Avon in the Midlands. He was also selected to play for the prestigious Rugby rugby club. For the last thirty years he was an enthusiastic member of the Delamere Forest golf club.
He died at Frodsham in 2001.