Posted by: ayrshirehealth | February 6, 2013

The Chime of Midnight by @colin_r_martin

Academic and socio-cultural experience 

Working to a plan and sticking to it is a personal mantra. 

NHS Scotland by boardTimeTherefore my plan for my first Professor of Mental Health job at UWS was to give it five good years and then to move on to pastures new.

Well, now the five years are up and I’m about to move on to a job in London, the opportunity arises for a reflection on the past five years of working and living in Scotland.

The first thing to say is that the whole experience has been an absolute ball, a real pleasure and a steep learning curve.  There are probably at least two elements to this, one the academic experience, the other more socio-cultural.

Academically, it has been a fabulous time. I had a number of objectives on starting the post at UWS, these being around themes of developing research capacity, developing post-graduate course provision and staff development.

Delivering academic progression 

UWS logoThese seem to have been achieved in terms of a large increase in research outputs from the mental health team, the development of three mental health-related Master degree courses and a large increase in mental health team staff studying for and obtaining higher degree’s.  However, a further implicit goal has been to develop an approach to research that has been based on partnership working with NHS partners generally and the NHS Boards in Scotland in particular, an approach that has been both fruitful and productive developing translational outputs and enduring and ongoing relationship with colleagues in the Boards.  In this respect, I believe all objectives have been achieved and the relationship between the mental health team at UWS and the NHS Boards is now excellent.


Regarding the socio-cultural side of things, this again has been enormously rewarding and insightful.  As a Londoner living in Scotland I have had the pleasure and privilege of living in what is clearly, an impressive country historically and socially, a nation, one with a pride and confidence in itself and moreover a clear social identity.  CommunityThis has proved to be a very welcoming environment for me and I have made many friends here, indeed, many of my colleagues have become valued friends and for that I am both grateful and enriched.

The valued and combined academic and social experiences of living and working in Scotland have enriched me greatly and I have no doubt will help and inform the work I’ll be doing in London.  In some respects, I feel sad to be moving on as the experience of living and working in Scotland has been so positive, working in what has become a perfect job in a beautiful country.


However, consistent with the mantra, it’s been five years and it’s time to go.

@Colin_r_martin is Professor of Mental Health at the University of the West of Scotland

Next week: @micmac650 returns with his third blog for ayrshirehealth


  1. Sending you very best wishes for the future Colin…. Ayrshire has been lucky to have you!

  2. […] The Chime of Midnight by Colin R Martin on the Ayrshire Health blog. […]

  3. […] Looking Back Looking Forward. As he looks ahead to his new job in London, Colin Martin reflected in The Chime of Midnight on the steep learning curve that he had had when he took up his post as Professor of Mental Health […]

  4. […] yet joyful) blog followed from Ayrshirehealth by @colin_r_martin as he writes his farewell blog, The Chime of Midnight. Having completed his five year tenure his time is now over, he is following personal mantra of […]

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