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Alumnus of the month looks back on his fondest memories


Leicester born and bred alumnus Ashton West enrolled onto Law in 1980 at what was then called Leicester Polytechnic. 


Ashton West main use

He remembers the paternoster lifts, the standard of teaching and sport with great fondness.

He has now been named as alumnus of the month. The Alumnus of the Month nominations are open year round. Once an alumnus gets nominated by either a fellow alumni, student, or member of staff, they are added to the pool of nominations.

Winners are then selected from this year round based upon those who have made exceptional contributions to their field of profession, or have had a significant impact on their local community.

Ashton said: “I was delighted to be Alumnus of the Month, it was a great pleasure and great honour, and I am really pleased to receive it.

 “I think I received it because of my background at the Polytechnic, my career which started in the Financial Services and my OBE which I was given in 2015.”

Ashton graduated with a 2.1 in Law LLB (Hons) in 1983. He said: “I chose to study at Leicester Polytechnic because the Law school had a good reputation, as it still does now. There was a good community spirit and the students were very supported by the lecturers.

“It was good for music and sport. I was keen on sport and played squash.”


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When asked what his fondest memories were, he said: “Sport and my social life. The standard of teaching was great, I enjoyed my time there, it was absolutely excellent and I have nothing but fond memories.”

Before Aston graduated he already had a job in insurance. He wanted to qualify in Law so decided to study for a degree.

He said: “The Law degree was a great foundation in insurance and would help with legal issues.”

Although he moved away from Leicester in his 20s, he is still connected to Leicester through family and is a great fan of Leicester Tigers. After graduating, Ashton moved to London where he worked at Iron Trade Insurance Company as it was known before it was sold to an Australian company called QBE.

He said: “I spent my whole life in insurance, in various roles which included management and then as CEO of Motor Insurers’ Bureau in 2003. I am a Chartered Insurer and never went back into Law until now. It took me this long but I am finally a Non-Executive Director on the board at Weightmans Solicitors.”

While working as CEO of Motor Insurers’ Bureau, Ashton received an OBE for services to road safety.

He said: “The core purpose of the business is to help people who are injured, killed or have their property damaged by drivers with no insurance. We step in and pay the claim.

“In 2003 we looked at ways to reduce the impact of uninsured drivers with the use of technology. We created a motor insurance database working with the police using automatic number plate recognition technology.

“We also worked with the DVLA on a parallel system to have every person’s licence data once they took out insurance. These contributions to road safety are why I received an OBE.”

Posted on Monday 7th January 2019

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