Pandemic expert and TV star Jonathan Van-Tam comes to Luton

A man who was often a calm voice of reason on daily TV briefings during the darkest days of the pandemic, is coming to Luton.

By Lynn Hughes
Tuesday, 17th May 2022, 1:44 pm
Updated Tuesday, 17th May 2022, 2:36 pm
Professor Sir Jonathan Van-Tam will be in Luton tomorrow
Professor Sir Jonathan Van-Tam will be in Luton tomorrow

Professor Sir Jonathan Van-Tam is hosting the next in a series of ‘An Evening With’ public lectures at the University of Bedfordshire tomorrow (Wednesday).

The former Deputy Chief Medical Officer will be delivering a lecture titled ‘Reflections on Leading Through The Covid-19 Pandemic’.

The lecture, from 5.30pm, will be running as a hybrid event – meaning the audience can attend in-person at the Luton campus or remotely via a live-stream.

Professor Sir Van-Tam held his position of Deputy Chief Medical Officer between 2017 and 2022, playing a key role in the UK's response to the Covid-19 pandemic, in particular the acquisition and roll out of vaccines. He regularly took part in daily news briefings in 2020 and 2021 over the course of the pandemic.

Before this role put him in the mainstream spotlight, Professor Sir Van-Tam trained as a physician in Nottingham and his career has taken him to many different fields, including Public Health England, the pharmaceutical and vaccine industries, the World Health Organization and roles in academia.

He was awarded an MBE in the 1998 New Year’s Honours list, and received a Knighthood in the 2022 New Year's Honours.

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Speaking about his public lecture, Professor Sir Van-Tam commented: “The public health and scientific challenges of the last 2.5 years have been unprecedented. I am glad there is now time to begin to reflect on our experiences and build for the future.”

Professor Rebecca Bunting, Vice-Chancellor, is the host of the University’s successful ‘An Evening With…’ public lecture series.

Ahead of this event, she said: “We are delighted to welcome Professor Sir Jonathan Van-Tam MBE to the University for what is sure to be an unmissable and fascinating lecture. His role in the UK’s response to the pandemic has been nothing short of inspiring and we’re honoured to host him and his expertise on campus to share his knowledge.”

‘An Evening With…Professor Sir Jonathan Van-Tam MBE’ is free to attend – simply register through bedfordshirevantam.eventbrite.co.uk Eventbrite and opt to join in-person or via the online livestream.