Thoughts and words by Jasbir Sidhu and John Ward.
At the tender age of 63, Dr Charles Burns Boyle, a colleague, friend, husband, father, and grandfather, passed away on Sunday 6 February 2022. On Thursday 17 February, we bid Charlie farewell at the Hurlet Crematorium, Glasgow.
Although Charlie had some underlying health issues (Asthma), this horrid Covid-19 pandemic that has taken so many away from us prematurely, hastened Charlie’s demise.
Charlie graduated at Glasgow University with a PhD in Astrophysics. Perhaps he was hoping to be an astronaut or pilot as he had a love of flying and space from his time in the Air cadets at an early age. He worked at the University of Cambridge for just over two years as a research fellow before entering the nuclear market. His route into the Nuclear arena was fortuitous – his PhD involved modelling the movement of stars and the software he developed for this could also be used to model the physics within reactors.
He joined the UK Atomic Energy Authority in October 1986 as a Senior Scientist. Anyone that knew Charlie could see that he was a leader and visionary. This was recognised within UKAEA and his career grew. He moved through the relevant grades and in April 1998, just 12 years after he started with UKAEA, he moved to Japan as Executive Vice President. After a successful stint there, he moved to Canada as Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer of Kinectrics, a company that had recently been acquired by AEA technology. “A truly remarkable achievement for a wee laddie from Glasgow!” – so said his colleague and long-term friend, John Ward.
The internal call to come home was too strong though and Charlie moved back to Glasgow in 2004. He worked in Glengarnock Technology centre for just under 2½ years before leaving AEA Technology after 21 years of service and a truly remarkable career to that point. Head hunted by AMEC in 2007, Charlie set about to establish a Glasgow office; where others had failed in the past he succeeded. His determination to succeed was in his DNA. This trait along with his international experience did not go unrecognised at AMEC and he was soon posted in the Middle East to establish the Abu Dhabi office which was also a great success. Charlie was in Abu Dhabi for just under three years before returning home to Glasgow.
In September 2016 Charlie joined our team at Corporate Risk Associates (CRA) as the Business Development Manager. Charlie set about working with the team to help diversify the service offerings and grow the business. His interpersonal skills were excellent and always put junior or senior members at ease. He had a very straight forward and lovable communications style. The extensive network of people he knew in the UK and international Nuclear Industry commanded his respect as he always interacted with all with integrity and honour.
A glass of Merlot and a relaxed environment brought out the best in Charlie and in turn that brought out the best in everyone around him. CRA team members have fond memories of great conversations covering a vast variety of subjects – a well read, and a great intellect shone through.
Charlie had a great love of family. This was one of the traits that drew Charlie to CRA and then being extremely supportive of the integration of CRA into the Assystem family in June 2020. Every conversation started and ended with him talking about his family and asking after others. For all his business acumen and drive to grow business, he never forgot the importance of family.
CRA Managing Director Jasbir Sidhu said:
“We are all in shock at the loss of Charlie. I am totally lost for words. Charlie’s contribution to CRA’s growth was second to none. As we look towards opening our Glasgow office later this year, we owe a lot to Charlie. His drive, enthusiasm and overall character will be missed, and it will be a bittersweet moment when CRA open that office as he would have loved it, once again, interacting with other team members on a personal basis. He will be sorely missed by all at CRA – a great intellect, a true entrepreneur, a fine upstanding gentleman and a personality in bags lost to us and the nuclear industry. From my point of view, I am not mourning the loss of a colleague today but the loss of a true friend.”
Our condolences go out to Charlie’s wife, family and friends.