Philip was an early student at The University Of East Anglia, graduating in Biological Sciences. He was recruited into ICI Mond Division's Mathematics Department: as a Mathematician in a Chemical company with a Biology degree, he felt he complied with UEA's motto "Do Different" (Norfolk accent, please). In using Philip as a "generalist", ICI recognised that he knew something about many things in general but not enough about anything in particular. This 'licensed ignorance' proved invaluable for a career in IT as it made asking questions with 'obvious' answers easy - "I'm a biologist: could you please explain..."
A member of The Newcomen Society since the late 1970's, his interests continue to be broad. As co-organiser of The Society's Symposium on "The White Salt Industry" in 2018, he has become more knowledgeable about Salt in Cheshire. Organising a Newcomen excursion to Rhydymwyn Valley works revealed more about the earliest days of atomic weapon development. He maintains an interest in IT infrastructure with a network of Raspberry Pi computers (ten at the last count) in his study.
He admits to knowing something about Church Music, having recently retired from a specialist choir after fifty years singing in churches great and small including Westminster Abbey and St John Lateran in Rome. Despite fifty years of active exploration, the footpaths of mid-Cheshire still hold surprises but perhaps fewer for him than for many others.