A vibrant and moving memorial was held in honour of George Weidenfeld, founder of the Europaeum association – “his first baby” – last September 24th, in the Sheldonian Theatre at the University of Oxford, in the presence of some 250 specially invited guests: scholars, friends, families, supporters, and, of course, beneficiaries from his various activities and scholarship schemes.
After coming to Oxford in 1991 with his idea for the Europaeum, Lord Weidenfeld continued to work and support the University in many different ways, serving for many years as Vice-President of the University’s Development Campaign. Several representatives from Europaeum programmes, from the Jenkins Scholarship Scheme (which is linked to the Europaeum), and from the Weidenfeld-Hoffman Scholarship Scheme were present. Three scholars gave moving statements about how much the latter scheme, which funds up to 25 top-ranking scholars each year, had helped to change their lives. Both were ideas first discussed within the Europaeum board.
Addresses were given by Dr Andrew Graham, Chair of the Europaeum Academic Council, and Oxford Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sally Mapstone, who is due to become the next Vice-Chancellor of St Andrews University. Other talks came from the Vice-Chancellor of Oxford, Professor Louise Richardson, and two relatives of Lord Weidenfeld, who died on January 20th at the age of 96. Please see here for a range of obituaries on Lord Weidenfeld. For a brief biographical note see here.