Bill Turnbull honoured with annual prize for medical students


A prize for medical students has been created in Bill Turnbull’s name (Picture: PA)

The late broadcaster Bill Turnbull has been honoured with an annual prize for medical students.

The former BBC Breakfast presenter died, aged 66, at his home in Suffolk in August last year after battling prostate cancer for five years.

Now it has been announced that he will be recognised with the scholarship for students at a Cambridge University college.

Roger Mosey, who is now Master of Cambridge’s Selwyn College, was an old colleague of Turnbull.

Turnbull also attended a number of events at Selwyn College over the years, giving talks about the media and his career, and now a prize has been set up in his name with the permission of his family.

The Bill Turnbull Prize for Clinical Medicine will be given to a Selwyn student in the fourth to sixth years of their medical degree.

Bill Turnbull and Susanna Reid.

Turnbull presented BBC Breakfast for 15 years, including with Susanna Reid from 2006 (Picture: PA)

It is backed by an ‘initial five-figure donation’ from private donors, in Turnbull’s name.

Many of Selwyn College’s students are based at Ipswich Hospital in Suffolk for some of their training.

This hospital was one of the places where Turnbull received care while being treated for cancer.

A travel scholarship is also being established at the college in recognition of Turnbull’s love of the United States, where he served as a BBC correspondent in New York and then Washington.

It will hand out £1,000 each summer to students wanting to travel to the USA for the benefit of their academic work.

‘Bill would be so honoured to be remembered with this prize and scholarship from Selwyn College,’ his widow Sesi Turnbull said.

‘Throughout his life he had a strong connection with America, where we lived as a family for some years while he was working as a BBC correspondent.

‘Towards the end of his life, after moving to Suffolk, Bill received outstanding care from Ipswich Hospital, for which we will always be grateful.’

Turnbull also appeared on the third season of Strictly Come Dancing in 2005 (Picture: BBC

She added that is was ‘wonderful to know that others will get the opportunity to broaden their studies in places which were so close to Bill’s heart’.

Master of Selwyn College Roger Mosey said that Turnbull was a ‘great friend’ to the college.

‘[He would] visit here often, generously giving his time to talk to students about his career and how they might themselves go into journalism,’ he said.

‘I’m delighted that his name will now be permanently associated with a prize and with support for future generations of students.’

Last month BBC Breakfast presenter Sally Nugent teared up as she remembered the ‘brilliant’ Turnbull on what would have been his 67th birthday.

Remembering their former colleague, Sally and co-host Nina Warhurst became emotional watching a clip of the ‘great man’.

‘He was just brilliant to work with’, Sally said.

She added that he was a ‘very, very kind, very wise’ person.

BBC Breakfast airs weekdays from 6am on BBC One.

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