Dr Julian Braybrook will take up his position today (Friday 1 June), taking over from Dr Derek Craston, who became the Government Chemist in 2008.
Dr Braybrook is currently Director of Measurement Science for the National Measurement Laboratory at LGC, a life sciences research and testing company. He is responsible for the science strategy and partnership development of metrology and regulatory analysis programmes, in support of the UK National Measurement System.
Commenting on his appointment Dr Braybrook said:
I am truly honoured to take up the position of Government Chemist. I am excited to build on the successes of Dr Craston and uphold the standing of this important role.
Since joining LGC in 1988, Julian has carried out a variety of roles delivering and managing national and European analytical research innovation and contract service solutions, for a wide range of chemical and biotechnology applications. He holds several national, European and international positions informing standards generation and application, as well as government and commercial policy and practice.
Julian has a degree in Chemistry from the University of London and a PhD from the University of Cambridge for research into novel contrast agents for magnetic resonance spectroscopy and imaging. He has an honorary DSc from Kingston University London for his contributions to chemistry. He is a Chartered Chemist and Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (CChem FRSC).
The Government Chemist role was created in 1909, to ensure the Laboratory of the Government Chemist could work independently of the Inland Revenue department (which provided staff to the Laboratory) and the Board of Customs and Excise (which controlled it). Nowadays the Government Chemist oversees the statutory function of referee analyst, resolving disputes over analytical measurements, particularly in relation to food regulatory enforcement.
It is fundamental to providing an independent voice for sound analytical measurement science and preventing miscarriages of justice. The Government Chemist also promotes analytical science and technology, and provides advice to government on policy, standards and regulation based on research carried out by him and his team.