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UEA and the Chamber
Norfolk Chamber has always maintained its values in helping young people into employment and in sustaining the excellence of the region’s educational institutions.
The organisation has a long-standing relationship with the University of East Anglia, and several of Chamber’s Presidents were heavily involved in the founding of the institution in the 1960s.
In 1958, prior to UEA’s establishment, Chamber President Andrew Ryrie, vice-Chairman of Reckitt & Colman Ltd, had called for a revival of previous movements for a regional University during a prize giving event at Lowestoft Technical College.
His strong belief was that the region required an institution that could support and meet its needs for more industrial manpower.
Chamber President Eric Mackintosh, of the confectioners John Mackintosh and Sons, was the son of John Mackintosh ‘the toffee King’ and the brother of Harold, 1st Viscount Mackintosh, who was later to become the first Chancellor of the UEA. Eric and Harold Mackintosh both donated personally and as a company to the formation of the University, their donations topping the list of the initial investors.
Richard Quintin Gurney of Barclay’s was also heavily involved in its formation, both financially and in terms of business. He was Chamber President, 1969-61, in the years leading up to its establishment and, furthermore, held the position of Lord Mayor 1961-2.
Raymond Frostick had also played a key role in the UEA since its inception, before later becoming a President of Chamber in the 1980s.
The Norwich Junior Chamber, of which he played a central part, had established previously in 1960 and took great interest in the University project from the start.
Frostick sat on the UEA Committee holding numerous meetings in 1962-3 to raise necessary funds. This culminated in a grand ball with 400 attendees at Earlham Hall, the profits of which purchased the silver mace presented to the Chancellor and still used today at congregation.