Chorley scientist wins top award for research

Dr William Unsworth
Dr William Unsworth
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A Lancashire scientist has scooped a highly-regarded industry award.

Dr William Unsworth, from Coppull, near Chorley, is the Royal Society of Chemistry Hickinbottom Award winner for 2018.

He has developed new ways to make two important classes of organic materials known as ‘macrocycles’ and ‘spirocycles’.

Both have high value as medicines and crop protection products, but both are difficult to make using existing methods. New, practical ways to access these materials more easily can help enable the discovery of new drugs and other technologies that can ultimately benefit society.

Dr Unsworth, who works at the University of York, said: “I am honoured and humbled to have been chosen to receive the 2018 RSC Hickinbottom Award.

“The list of previous winners features many of the greats of UK organic chemistry, several of whom are genuine personal heroes of mine, and I couldn’t be happier to be following in their illustrious footsteps.

I’m really looking forward to sharing some of research on macrocycle and spirocycle synthesis during a lecture tour.”

Dr Unsworth will receive £2,000 and a medal, along with the Briggs Scholarship, which awards £4,000 to support one of his research students.

He will also complete a UK lecture tour telling people about his discovery.