Bernard Chamberlain

Medical Laboratory Technician | The Queen Elizabeth Hospital | 1967-2012

Bernard Roger Edward Chamberlain was born 16 September 1948 to Albert and Edna in Bath, Somerset, England. He emigrated to Australia with his parents and sisters, Pauline and Barbara, on the S.S. Orsova. Arriving in Adelaide in June 1961, and calling Finsbury Migrant Hostel home for 6 months.

In 1966 he matriculated from Adelaide Boys High School. During School Holidays he worked at Walsh’s Oriental Hotel, in Rundle Street, Adelaide.

Bernard commenced work at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital on 13 March 1967 as a Laboratory Assistant. While working he studied part-time at The South Australian Institute of Technology for the Medical Laboratory Certificate – Medical Laboratory Technician.

Job advertisement for Laboratory Assistant position

His long career at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital saw many changes; most noticeably on staffing levels and technological advancements. In 2010/2011 Bernard was involved in the education of prospective new technicians in preparation for his proposed retirement.

Bernard Passed away at Flinders Private Hospital on 7 February 2012, at the age of 63.

Bernard’s dedication and service to The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and to the people it serves, went beyond ‘the job’. It was furthered by his involvement in raising money for the hospital and other worthwhile causes. As he worked ‘behind the scenes’ at the hospital, Bernard also worked ‘behind the scenes’ at the Revue Society. His ‘out of the limelight’ contributions included creating props, painting and sound and light for many of the productions.

Cast and Crew of TQEH Revue Society production of Cinderella, 1977.

Bernard was also a member of the Something Outrageously Different Society (SODS, inaugurated 1977). This group raised money for many causes while enjoying social activities.

Out of the Hospital setting Bernard was also a casual volunteer on The One and All project. In his free time he enjoyed photography; recording many occasions related to family and work that would otherwise be forgotten with the passage of time. He also enjoyed wood work, and was a long term member of The Jag Club. Through his various activities Bernard formed a varied group of connections. He immersed himself in all projects, learning and helping others in the process.

Written by Pauline Taylor, reproduced here with permission.