William Hook was born in 1911. He graduated in chemistry from Kings College, University of Durham in 1933 and then gained a PhD in 1936 for research on the coking process. He then joined the Charlaw and Sacriston Collieries Company in Co. Durham. After nationalisation he was an area Chief Scientist, then in 1962 became Deputy Chief Scientist in the Durham Division. During this time he specialised in coal preparation and carbonisation and gained an international reputation relating to coal treatment by froth flotation and flocculation. In 1970 he was appointed Carbonisation Scientist at the Scientific Control headquarters on Tyneside. Here he was concerned with coal and coke qualities, especially furnace coke, and worked closely with staff at the British Steel Corporation.
He was NEIMME President in 1974-75.
In addition he had been National Secretary for the Coal Preparation Society and Chairman of the Northern Section of the Coke Oven Managers Association.
In 1966 he received NEIMME’s G.C.Greenwell Bronze Medal for an unpublished paper with G.A.Mason on Markets and coal quality.
His foreign travels included a visit to Germany and the Netherlands in 1949 to study mines there and to South Africa in 1976 to present the lecture on coal analysis noted below.
Hook died in 1985.
Hook,W. and Wood, N. Rapid determination of ash with special reference to x-ray methods Mining Engineer 123 1963-64, 395-415
Hall, D.A. and Hook, W. Spontaneous combustion in coal mines, with special reference to the North East Mining Engineer 125 1965-66, 375-390
Hook, W. Blending in National Coal Board Conference on carbonisation. 1972,
Hook, W. Full circle [Presidential address NEIMME] Mining Engineer 134 1974-75, 463-467
Hook, W. Primary coal – analytical needs in Strasheim, A. and Steele, T.W. Analytical chemistry in the exploration, mining and processing of materials. 1978, 1465-1473