News & Press: Member News

R Adm Mike Burgoyne CB RN

04 July 2019   (0 Comments)
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It is with great sadness that we record the passing of Mike Burgoyne, Institute Director from 1983 to 1992.


Rear Admiral (Robert) Michael Burgoyne CB was educated at Bradfield College and then Magdalene College, Cambridge. He joined the Royal Navy in 1944 and, after training as a navigator and later as an aircraft controller, went on to enjoy an illustrious career.

His career included: Commanding Officer HMS Cleopatra 1967-68; Captain 2nd Frigate Squadron and Commanding Officer HMS Undaunted 1972-73; Director, Maritime Tactical School 1974-75; Commanding Officer HMS Antrim 1975-77; Commander, British Navy Staff, Washington and UK Representative to SACLANT 1977-80; Senior Naval Member, Directing Staff, Royal College of Defence Studies 1980-82.

Mike retired from the Royal Navy as a Rear Admiral at the age of 55. He had been appointed as Aide-de-Camp to The Queen and became a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 1982 Birthday Honours.

Mike replaced Mike Richey, the founding Director of the Royal Institute of Navigation, in 1983 - a time when computers were in their infancy but there was no World Wide Web. During his 10-year tenure, amongst many innovations, Mike oversaw the introduction of Special Interest Groups, the launch of Navigation News and the inauguration of what became the NAV series of conferences. Mike not only made a great contribution to Institute affairs but, with a rich sense-of-humour, ran an HQ that was a pleasure to visit.

After his retirement as Director of the Royal Institute of Navigation, in 1998 Mike was awarded the JED Williams Silver Medal for 'an outstanding contribution to the affairs of the Institute' and was awarded Honorary Fellowship in 2001.

Mike then became a very active member of the National Coastwatch Institution, including Deputy Station Manager (Operations) at Portland Bill. Mike was also Vice-President Sea Safety Group (UK) 1992-96 and Chairman of West Dorset District Scout Council 1995-97.

Mike suffered a fall from which he did not recover. He did not want a funeral but had asked that he should 'go out in a party spirit'.  This occurred on 11 August, when his successor as Director, David Broughton, gave a eulogy at an event in his village of Uploders, Dorset.

We pass our heartfelt condolences to Mike's partner, Beryl.

Robert Michael Burgoyne     1927 - 2019