NHE Research Experience & Qualifications

Professional Academic Research Experience

Senior Lecturer in Chemistry at the Department of Chemistry, Lancaster University
Lecturer in Chemistry at the Department of Chemistry, Lancaster University

My current research goal is the preparation and study of novel host molecules that are capable of binding and sensing a variety of ionic and molecular guests. As part of this research programme, synthetic investigations into rapidly preparing interlocked molecules have been undertaken.

At Lancaster I have supervised a number of students undertaking research projects. In 2021/22, this included a second year PhD student and four undergraduate project students.

I am active within the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), being a committee member of the Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry (MASC) interest group.

As of August 2022, I am Head of the Department of Chemistry at Lancaster University (as well as Interim Head of the Chemical Synthesis research section).

Post-Doctoral Research Associate in the Department of Chemistry, Durham University

Supervisor: Prof David Parker FRS

During my post-doctoral research, I synthesised macrocyclic lanthanide complexes as part of a project to generate luminescent probes of chiral environments. After using chiral HPLC to verify their enantiopurity, the complexes were studied using fluorescence and circularly polarised luminescence spectroscopies.

University Qualifications

DPhil in Inorganic Chemistry at Wadham College, University of Oxford

Title of Thesis: Redox-Active Rotaxanes and Catenanes for Anion Sensing
Supervisor: Prof Paul Beer

My doctoral research primarily involved the design and synthesis of solution-based redox-active interlocked molecules followed by the study of their anion sensory capabilities by use of NMR spectroscopy and electrochemical voltammetric techniques.

I also prepared further anion-templated interlocked structures, including examples possessing exotic topology, with others exhibiting controllable molecular motion.

MChem in Chemistry (1st Class Honours) at Wadham College, University of Oxford

Final Classification: 1st in the University,

Classified 1st in the University in First Public (2003) and Final (2004 & 2005) Examinations.

In my final year, I undertook a full-time research project, under the supervision of Prof Paul Beer, submitting a thesis entitled: “Novel Calix[4]arene Systems for Interlocked Architecture Formation”.

Honours and Awards

2012 Finalist of Reaxys PhD Prize, a global competition celebrating originality, innovation and excellence in methodology and approach of synthetic chemical research.

2011 Nature Chemistry Poster Prize at the RSC Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry Meeting, University of Bath.

2006 Departmental Thesis Prize for quality of final year project research thesis.

2005 Gibbs Prize for performance in Final Examinations.

2003 BP Chemicals Ltd Prize and AstraZeneca Bursary for performance in First Public Examinations.