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Henry Buller

Henry Buller

Henry Buller

It is with deep sadness that we share news that our dear friend and colleague, Prof. Henry Buller, died at home with his family, on 2nd May 2023. His intellectual curiosity, warmth, love of transdisciplinary and international connection, means he will be missed by many. Henry worked extensively on projects around farm animal welfare, the use of antimicrobials in animal care, and agricultural policy change. He edited the Routledge Human-Animal Studies Series and Sociologia Ruralis supporting scholars to shape more-than human studies. Henry’s exceptional generosity, compassion,  and sense of fun, means many will feel his loss very deeply.

The Department of Geography at Exeter has lost a much loved recent Head of Department - Henry had been with us since 2003 and was a central pillar of our community. 

Henry Buller

Condolences and memorial tributes

Henry was always seeming to have fun with his funny email photos and quips. I enjoyed working with him and for him. Trevor

It was such a shock to learn of Henry’s passing today. In the short time I’ve known him, almost exactly a year, I came to love Henry’s presence in the department – his always happy demeanour in staff meetings, the positive energy and the wisdom that he brought. Henry was on the hiring committee when I applied for my current post, and his assured and affable presence in the interview (and the time he took to talk to me afterwards) really helped me confirm my decision to take the job. I was also delighted to learn at this point that Henry lived locally to me in Bristol, and now feel very fortunate to have bumped into him on one occasion there (when I was able to thank him for offering me my post and he was typically enthusiastic about the prospect of working together). More recently, I spotted a board up in the department communicating some of Henry’s animal geographies research. Even in its brief summary of some of his work, I found this board so enlightening, and wish I’d taken the chance to talk to Henry more about his thought-leading research interests and ideas. I’m so sorry there won’t be further opportunities to interact and socialise with Henry, and learn more from his career in academia and deep work in the discipline. I am, however, so grateful for the few opportunities I did have. I would like to send my sincere condolences to Henry’s family at this very sad time – he was clearly a very special person and his upbeat presence in the department will be sorely missed. Alasdair Jones

I remember Henry as having boundless energy, he always found a time to respond and to support people. He was exceptionally kind and always saw the good in people. I will still never know how he managed to do so much and commit so much to others, even when as not well himself. Something that also sticks in my mind always was how fondly he described his daughter and grandchild to me, when chatting to me about my kids. You will always be loved as a hugely valuable member of our department, thank you so much for everything you did for us. X. Lucy Rowland

My time with Henry was brief, but I always remember his kindness and thoughtfulness standing out. This is a very sad loss. My condolences go out to his family, friends, and colleagues. Taylor Butler-Eldridge

My memories of Henry date back to over 40 years ago when we were both doing PhDs and were both members of the Rural Economy & Society Study Group, the brainchild of the late Philip Lowe. This was a lively and youthful group and somewhat iconoclastic, taking on the orthodoxies of Agricultural Economics and the behaviourism that dominated Human Geography at the time. Henry revelled in this new thinking and came to play an important role in the way Human Geography has so fundamentally changed since. We kept in touch when Henry went to France and I played a part in luring him back to these shores in the late 1990s when he joined me at what was then the Gloucester College of HE. What fun it was to be working directly with Henry on research projects. Always enthusiastic and taking great joy in his research and teaching, he was a great colleague. I resolved when I left for Exeter in 2021 that if I possibly could I would find a way for Henry to come west too. And so a couple of years later, for a second time I enthusiastically welcomed him as a colleague. And what a wonderful appointment it proved to be – Henry threw himself into Exeter Geography heart and soul, caring and creative, energetic and endearing. This was his niche - he was right for Exeter and Exeter was right for him. As for me I ended up in the Exeter Politics and then Sociology departments until, that is, nearly a year ago when Henry helped facilitate my return to Geography for the finale to my career for which I am so very grateful. Henry was a born academic and scholar, alongside that he was a decent, caring and fun colleague. So I finish with a story that typifies that sense of fun. When my son Ben, now 30, was 9 or 10 years old, he managed to leave a much loved teddy bear on a train and it ended up in lost property at Bristol Temple Meads. To save a trip to Bristol, I asked Henry if he would kindly collect the bear and bring him to Exeter on his next trip. He did so but not only that, the bear was returned to Ben with an accompanying set of holiday snaps – the bear on Clifton Suspension Bridge, at the station, etc. A delightful twist to the story of the missing bear that was ‘so Henry’ – thoughtful and kind. Michael Winter

A few minutes ago, I just learned from my good friend Jo Hockenhull that one of our life mentors has passed away. I am in shock and profoundly saddened to learn this. So here I would like to extend my condolences to you, Henry's dear family and friends. Henry showed me the ropes and the wonderful world of geography and qualitative research. He keep us (Jo and I) sane and happy in troubled times while working at Bristol Uni. For that, I will always be in debt. While working on the SWHILI - Bodmin project, que used the quote "Licence to communicate" he told us we were witnessing a James Bond project that created a bubble to communicate between Vets and Farmers. I went on to work in other places, always trying to find those phrases that capture the results as Henry did. One could only hope he realised how much he meant to distant collaborators like me. So here, very grateful you had allowed us to share this with you and all the positive ripples his life had… although I am sure you have witnessed this first-hand. He was a great mystery man, full of wisdom, joy and care for others, with an immense passion for life geographies where furry and feather creatures had their space. I know many will miss him to the bone, myself included. I hope he is now pain-free, playing music and having great conversations with the most exciting folks up there in the universe. All this while keeping an eye on his loved ones. Thanks for taking the time to read. May you rest in peace, Dearest Henry! - Thanks for believing in the AMUVP project and us! Gabriela Olmos Antillón

Henry’s boundless curiosity and enduring friendship will be his greatest legacy. With a smiling face and passionate interest in others he made academic collaborations an absolute pleasure. There has never been a greater advocate and example to others in demonstrating the power of transdisciplinary working. Professor David Main

I was so very sad to hear the news of Henry's passing. Henry was without doubt one of the kindest and most supportive of people I have worked with over the past 25+ years in academia. Always ready to listen and share thoughts and advise, it was a huge pleasure to have worked closely with him in different roles at Exeter. His sense of fairness and his ability to deal calmly with pretty much everthing that came our way in various Dept management roles was amazing. Henry - your warm and ready smile will be very much missed here. Rest in peace. Chris

I simply want to express my deep sadness about Henry's death and send my condolences to those who cared about him. I was lucky to have many conversations with Henry (principally at the British Animal Studies Network) and will always remember his insight, humour and collegiality. Bob McKay (ShARC)

Really sorry to hear this sad news about Henry. I first met Henry in the late 1980s and we worked together in the 1990s on agricultural pollution and European environmental policy. Henry was infectiously enthusiastic to work with and we roved around Europe learning about slurry and silage effluent, sewage and shellfish. It was always a joy to visit Henry when he worked in Paris, he knew great places to eat. He was always upbeat and full of energy. I had a nice hour with him last year picking his brains on the subject of horses. He made a real mark on animal geographies/more-than-human geography and will be sorely missed. Neil Ward

How unbelievably lucky we were to have Henry at the University of Exeter. An inspiring mind and a generous mentor. He was my Second Supervisor and I always looked forward to our meetings because I knew that I would leave feeling more assured of my writing and more confident in myself, along with a smile on my face. His passing is such a loss- and such a shock. The world of animal welfare, animal geographies and the social sciences more generally has lost a brilliant thinker and I can only imagine the sorrow his family must be experiencing at his untimely passing. I send my deepest condolences to his family, friends, colleagues and students at Exeter. Henry was blessed with a charm and wit that I hope all who knew him can now remember fondly and find solace in the kindhearted smiling Henry we were lucky to know. May he rest in peace. Eimear Mc Loughlin

I am so very sorry to hear that Henry has passed away. Henry has been an ongoing beacon of light throughout my academic career, starting with him writing a chapter for a book I co-edited with Lynda Birke while I was doing my PhD. I had the privilege of working more closely with him alongside my friend and colleague Gaby in my first postdoctoral role at Bristol Vet School on the SWHLI Knowledge Exchange project. It was here that Henry initiated us into the ways of the social sciences, a path both of us are continuing to follow in our research today. He was a mentor and a friend through what was a challenging time. A few years after that, I worked with Henry again on a short defra AMR project and then more recently, with both Henry and Gaby on Gaby’s AMR project. Our little team back together. Henry was always an absolute pleasure to work with full of enthusiasm, warmth and passion. He inspired us and believed in us. I hope he realised just how big an impact he had on the lives he touched. He will be greatly missed as a mentor and a friend. Sending love and deepest sympathies. Jo Hockenhull

Very sorry to hear this news. Henry was a fantastic colleague, friend and fellow scholar. He was so generous with his time and opinions. A reliable source of a good idea or sage advice and a superb mentor to younger colleagues. I have fond memories of long discussions around the margins of conferences about animals of all shapes and sizes. He will be sorely missed by geographers from many backgrounds. I wish all strength to his family and close friends. Jamie Lorimer

Henry was on the selection committee when I interviewed for a lectureship at the University of Exeter in 2012. I remember being struck by his genuine interest in and curiosity about my work, both during the selection process, and in the ensuing years. To me, Henry was one of those rare academics who are able to think beyond and outside of their existing positions and standpoints. Someone who was not only comfortable, but also welcomed being challenged. Someone who was always gentle in how he challenged others. We stayed in touch after I left Exeter, and he remained an extremely supportive mentor. I was really keen on inviting him to be the external examiner for one of my best PhD students, and did contact him about this, but sadly, that is not be. I will miss him - as a person, and as one of the best minds in animal geographies. Krithika Srinivasan

Henry was a wonderful fixture at all the BASN conferences—- he was a rare combination of intellectually formidable but warm and approachable. He was a generous, thoughtful chair and question-asker, especially to a nervous ECR. We will all remember him with huge fondness, and miss him dreadfully. ALG

As an undergraduate I was absolutely ecstatic that I could study animal geographies, I can remember absolutely loving every lecture and feeling like so many of my thoughts about more-than-human relationality were being validated, it was wonderful. I also remember the exam paper and having the opportunity to write about a man who ended up in hospital after eating a slug as a dare and what that says about bodily boundaries - I don't think I recall any of my other exam answers but I loved writing that one! I was then lucky enough to work with Henry as a post doc on the Hennovation Project. Henry was seriously fun to work with, hyper-interesting, but probably more importantly than any of that, I never felt that overwhelming imposter syndrome when working with him. As I began my university life later than most and as a single parent this is not just some throw away comment - it meant something real and tangible to me. He made academia exciting, relevant, and accessible. I learned so much working on Hennovation and it has shaped the rest of my career; I know I am just one of so many whose career paths will have been forged by working with Henry. My very deepest condolences to all his loved ones. Louise MacAllister

Henry's work on the British in rural France from the 1990s was some of the first academic research I ever engaged with. I was hooked, and it helped inspire a PhD and early career research. Years later I had the privilege of working with Henry at Exeter and even more inspiration followed. I am forever indebted. Thank you Henry.

I am so very sorry to read about Henry's passing. Henry was a bright and engaging scholar and lecturer, whose contributions to research and teaching alike were foundational and formative to many in (and beyond) the geography community. Working with and learning from Henry on fieldtrips (to Paignton zoo, and to New York) was joyful, special and informative to my teaching that followed. Henry was of course also a really kind and funny person. I remember fondly Henry accidentally ordering far too much spaghetti at a New York restaurant, and telling me the top tips he had learned from a family member about how to take a portrait photo with a movie-star grin. I'd like to send my heartfelt condolences and care to Henry's family, friends and everyone at Exeter geography during this difficult time. Anna Jackman

I am deeply saddened to learn of Henry's passing. He was a true inspiration, combining intellectual acumen and originality with a warm, collegiate and generous approach to academia life. We will miss him greatly. Beth Greenhough, University of Oxford

Such a loss. Those of us at the Department of Environment and Health and others at the Swedish University of Agricultural Science will miss a wonderful collaborator and friend. We got to know Henry through the large EU research project ‘Welfare Quality’. For many of us, he was our first contact with the world of human geography and how it links to animal welfare. But it was enough for us to establish a collaboration that has extended over almost 20 years. There have been many collaborations over these years and the two large ongoing projects will be all the poorer without his creative contributions. He visited us in Uppsala on numerous occasions and in 2016 lived here for several months, renting an apartment. His ‘out of the box’ thinking stimulated scientific debate and his cheerful presence was always appreciated. He also enlightened us on everything from how to identify affordable champagne and the subtleties of Beaufort d’Alpage cheese, to details of locations in Uppsala for the filming of Ingmar Bergman’s Fanny and Alexander. He was fun to be around and an inspiration on many levels, not only work. We have benefited tremendously by his intelligence, generous sharing of knowledge and enjoyed his friendly smiling face and his kindness. We will miss him. Colleagues from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

I had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with Henry at several human-animal studies events over the past decade or so, which led to his contributing chapters to the academic volumes that I co-edited with Garry Marvin. I greatly enjoyed every opportunity to learn from Henry, and appreciated especially his warm sense of humor. In my work now as Editor in Chief of the journal Society & Animals, I see all the more clearly how many more will continue to benefit from his vibrant and visionary contributions to bridging cultural geography with human-animal studies. My heart goes out to all of you who were so much closer to him.

Henry was the most fantastically supportive and positive colleague. In the range of senior roles Henry fulfilled within the department, he always demonstrated a deep care for the well-being, development, and career progression of all his colleagues. He once said to me: “I think all my colleagues are brilliant, and I want them all to be professors”. He basically tried to make things better for us all. A recent example of Henry’s leadership and compassion came as Head of Department and during the Covid outbreak. Without his leadership, and more importantly his personality, I don’t know how we’d have managed to react to the incredible challenges we faced. I was meeting (virtually) with Henry very regularly during this time, and the amazing energy, care and understanding he showed throughout was a huge source of support; I will always be grateful for this. Henry will be terribly missed in the University by so many people. Iain Hartley

I never met Prof Buller, but I am saddened to read this. I came across his work some years back and thought it was of interest, I used to read his papers for enjoyment and interest. Zoe

Dear Henry. May you rest in peace. With a smile on your face. I never saw you without one. Kindest of thoughts and regards to you and your family. Katie Parr

Henry was one of the first Study Abroad Coordinators I worked with when I joined the university 16 years ago. He was so welcoming and talked with such passion about study abroad, he was a great advocate for students and encouraged everyone to take up the study abroad experiences available to them. I would love bumping into Henry on campus as he strode about with purpose, he’d always stop for a chat even if it was tipping it down. Thank you Henry for your tutelage over the years, your kind words and encouragement, you will be sadly missed. Anna Moscrop

I am very sad to hear of Henry's passing. I was lucky to be head of department for Psychology at the same time when he was head of department for Geography and we bonded over the labyrinths of this experience. Henry was always kind and generous, diplomatic but firm, willing to share his experiences, but also his uncertainties and hesitations. He softened the edges we all encountered everyday as Heads of Department and so often brought empathy and kindness to my day. Meeting Henry accidentally on campus was always a joy. I will miss you dear Henry. Thank you for being there. Manuela Barreto

I extend my deepest sympathies to Henry’s family, friends, and colleagues. This, I know will be many, since his life and work had such significant impact. He was the very first person I met at Exeter, 11 years ago when he interviewed me for my first role at Exeter. Since then, I benefited from his mentorship and leadership as recent head of department. He approached his work with a contagious enthusiasm and a deep sense of curiosity that inspired countless students and colleagues alike. He was a really great colleague who approached every challenge and difficult task with a smile. Henry will be sadly missed. Damien

I am so very sorry to learn of Henry’s passing. A truly engaging and thoughtful man, I was fortunate to have Henry as one of my PhD supervisors. I will remember Henry with great fondness. In conversation, he was always empathetic, curious and engaging. He has greatly influenced how I approach research and he will be greatly missed in Amory.

I will always remember Henry as a wonderfully intelligent, kind and supportive colleague who was always captivating and inspiring. I am truly saddened by the fact that he is no longer with us. Julien Dugnoille

Having only known Henry briefly as Head of Discipline all I can say is that he was a sincere, lovely man, who had the Students, new and old, Staff and family at the centre of his Universe. You could not of had a more caring and genuine person which shone through in the way he interacted with people. He will be a very sad loss to his immediate family but also to his University family of staff and students. He was a breath of fresh air in a very hectic world. He remembered what was important. Alastair Crocker

Henry was the best. Such a kind soul with much joyfulness and passion. I loved his wisdom to not worry about the little annoying things, knowing there were bigger things out there to think about. We worked closely for 5 years of laughter, and stories and ‘oh gosh’s. I can’t believe I won’t get a ‘Ye Gods!’ email again, or one starting with a black and white photo. Even his use of punction was expressive! Not having known a huge amount about his research, last year I attended an online seminar he gave, it was fantastic to see further into that world which brought him so much interest, which so many in the department knew well. I’m so very glad I attended. He had many old friends in the department and new friends too, who will miss him greatly. The world is the worse for the loss of Henry. Isabel Castle

Henry was genuinely one of the most patient, kind, positive, respectful and easy to get along with people I have ever, not only worked with, but every known. Bev

I am so very sorry to hear about Henry. His thoughtfulness and kindness as Head of Department shone through, even when shepherding his colleagues through things like REF. My thoughts are with his family, friends and Geography colleagues for such a sad loss. Sumi

Henry was a fantastically generous, supportive, challenging, and kind external examiner for my PhD back in December 2020. We stayed in touch afterwards as I built my fledgling career and he would invite me to participate in things he was organising, and would agree to participate in things I was organising, always with great positive spirit. Henry was an examplar human and academic, someone who I aspired to emulate especially in my interactions with junior colleagues in higher education. My sincerest condolences go to Henry's family, and to his colleagues at Exeter, for their great loss. Alistair Anderson

Dear Henry, When thinking about how on earth I was going to write this, I typed your name into my Whatsapp to see what I had said about you over the years to people like my other-half or my mum. Spattered amongst comments of successful meetings, experiences of comfort and alleviation of worries are messages like: I am sooooooo lucky. Oh my goodness I love him. CS, 9th Nov 2022. And I guess really that sums it up. As over the last three years, despite having only ever actually met you in-person once, you have become one of the most important guiding figures in my life. Meeting with you and Kristen every week has been nothing less than therapeutic. By the end of our meetings, my weekly crises feel manageable and often even opportunities for further investigation. You effortlessly turn my jumbled up thoughts and worries into ‘social science speak’ and somehow everything I do is interesting. I just found an email where I’ve sent some fairly mundane work to which you reply: Will read them with joy. HB, 23rd March 2022. So I guess it is natural to feel very lost while I start the part where I feel like I need you the most, and I know you deeply wanted to be a part of. Kristen and I will do our best to go on without you, in your name and memory, but we will miss you and think of you at every step. I will always be so grateful for the incredible mentorship you have given me, I hope I can do you justice. Claire Scot

It was a privilege to have Henry supervised my PhD project. I was astound and appreciated by his word-for-word comments on new PhD student’s monthly writing, which gives me great encouragement. It is my pity that I cannot learn more from him. Henry was erudite, patient, humorous and great. Special thanks for his supervision and he will be deeply missed.

Such a loss. Henry was a super geographer in every way and a lovely colleague to boot. Karen Bickerstaff

Henry was one of the most wonderful colleagues anyone could hope for. Friendly, supportive and open. Henry always gave generously, both in terms of his time and his positive ideas. He was always 'on your side', but in a manner where one always felt encouraged to contribute. He was a great colleague for many years at Exeter, and a treasured friend. We will all miss him massively. David Harvey

I remember Henry and his support as a new lecturer in the department fondly and only recently was in a Zoom breakout room with him in a department meeting talking about office space. He was cheekily telling me how he used to camp out in his office sometimes to avoid too much back and forth travel from Bristol. I was shocked and saddened to hear of his passing and will miss my interactions with him in Exeter Geography. I send my deepest condolences to his loved ones. Georgie Bennett

We have truly lost a giant among us, upon whose shoulders so many of us have learned to stand - one who would gently pick us up whenever we stumbled, with so much grace and humour and kindness and style. Henry implausibly believed that a quantitatively trained veterinarian could understand the vocabulary - let alone the intricacies - of social science methodologies and research and patiently took me along for an amazing and life-changing ride which has altered my career and life in such remarkable ways. The wonder with which he saw the world – from tuk-tuk rides across Bangkok to insights about UK smallholding farmers to the experiences of the crew in ‘Below Deck’ – was always uplifting and so inspiring to behold and engage with. He could cut through the dross of my verbiage when trying to answer a student’s question and come right to the heart of the matter, even if (as a Geographer!) he also led a group of us in a very large circle one night in Thailand trying to find a restaurant which ended up being right across the street from our hotel! Henry taught me about responsibilisation (which I did not believe was a word at first reckoning) and always took kindly to my editing out of extraneous commas in his brilliantly crafted sentences … I always thought I wrote long sentences before we began writing together! He was fascinated by what goes on inside the head of a veterinarian and was so proud that he could pronounce ‘fluoroquinolone’ without a hitch when presenting our findings to colleagues in DEFRA. His distinct love of life, music and his family - whom he talked of often and always so fondly – was complemented by his love of asking in-depth questions and finding out the answers, of seeing the joy on a student’s face when they finally ‘got it’ and of unpacking difficult concepts in a way only he could. He was still teaching and exploring until the very end, and he has given us so very much to remember him by. Henry poured himself into so many of us, and we will continue to carry the torch he lit in us, his light shining so brightly through us and our work that his flame will not go out. I know that would make him smile. Kristen Reyher

My deepest sympathies are with Henry’s family. He was an incredibly special man who has made a significant and lasting impact on the Geography department. His kindness, brilliance and sense of fun made doing a PhD with him a unique and wonderful experience. His passion for his work was so strong but he put people front and centre, which is why he was an important Head of Department. He brought enormous energy into the department which from my perspective centred on ensuring people were well treated, supporting people with less conventional career paths and putting kindness and collegiality at the heart of the department. He supported success in us in many ways including supporting those who have taken a range of meandering paths. I will always be grateful for the opportunity to work with him. I have really fond memories of chats with him at staff events and being in awe of his stories of his colourful and interesting past. I will so miss his joyful, twinkling eyes, his sense of fun and hearing about his latest exciting projects. My thoughts are with everyone who misses him. Rebecca Sandover

We are saddened to hear that Henry has passed away. We remember him with fondness whilst working in the Department of Geography. He always took the time to engage in conversation and provided support when needed. Our heartfelt condolences to all of Henry’s family at this sad time. Tracy and Barry

Henry, you will be sorely missed. A gentleman always, with a ready smile and a knowing gleam in your eye. A huge sense of loss at your untimely passing. Patrick Devine-Wright

When the British Animal Studies Network has its annual meeting at the University of Strathclyde next week, there will be a massive gap. Henry was always one of the people I was most pleased to see there. He brought with him an intellectual generosity and serious engagement with other people’s work and ideas, and was the model of a senior academic for younger scholars in attendance. His work in more-than-human-geography likewise exemplified what the field might be: engaged with pressing everyday concerns while utilising sophisticated philosophical ideas with clarity. This year’s BASN meeting is titled ‘The State of the Field’ and, to my mind, the field of human-animal studies is where it is today in no small part because of his contribution. On a personal note, I will miss Henry’s sense of humour, his complaints about the vegan food, and hatred of institutional coffee (he was known to lead small packs of academics to the nearest Costa during breaks). For these and so many other reasons, I will miss him at BASN meetings and beyond. He was a mainstay, a teacher, a much loved friend. RIP Henry. Erica Fudge

Henry was the inspiration for me to get into social sciences and human geography. Such a humble and gentle soul, he would patiently and thoughtfully listen to us vets babble on and then come out with the most spot on and intellectually stimulating comments and ideas. The twinkle in his eye and gentle supervision encouraged me to think further and harder. He inspired the kind of rebellious questioning that gets you into trouble! Henry was pivotal in helping me get a PhD. I am proud to sit alongside his name on papers and will be forever grateful for the chance to work with and get to know such a wonderful person. Lisa Morgans

Henry took over as Head of Department when I was the Physical Geography External Examiner at Exeter. It was such a pleasure to work with him (and the wider teaching team). He had a quiet leadership style that allowed us as externals to be critical friends, and to enjoy excellent relations and hospitality when visiting the University. As a group of heads of geography departments meeting up at the Royal Geographical Society each year it was always a pleasure to see Henry in attendance. Helen Walkington

You have travelled with me in my thoughts so much recently Henry. You inspired so many of the people I have met up with, and so many of the people I have been in contact with over email. I have been reminded again of the depth of connections and breadth of networks that your enthusiasm and intellectual energy built and through which you will live on. I feel so privileged to have been a part of these. I will treasure the always astute contributions you made to workshops and seminars, the always enjoyable drinks and dinners, the sometimes ironic exchanges about ‘Life Geographies’, where we often talked about animal killing, and the intersecting conversations about obscure music in all of these. You were an irrepressible and amazing colleague and friend. My heart goes out to everyone, to family, friends, and everyone you worked with, who is trying to make sense of the loss of someone who was always so fully alive. Gail Davies

Henry was just the best colleague and head of department. Always cheerful, always supportive. Thanks Henry, you'll be sorely missed. Nick Gill

So clever, so kind, so talented. Henry was a generous soul, and taken way too soon. Steve Hinchliffe

Henry was always a caring and supportive figure. It all started in July 2017 when I got a phone call from Henry to offer me the job and welcomed me to to join his ‘DIAL’ team. Whenever he noticed that I faced challenges in my research, career, or personal life, he always asked if I wanted to have a chat. He always showed his care and support, even asked me to text him to make sure I returned home safe after field work. All these made me feel the warmth and care from Henry. Henry was a inspirational, patient, and generous leader. Working with Henry, I could feel his satiable curiosity which kept him learning, he always shared what he read, showed his eagerness to learn from others by listening carefully and jotting down other people’s thoughts. He was always generous to lend his books or send me the references that were helpful for me. He showed me the way to be humble, respectful, and patient to others. Henry was strict to himself but lenient to others. Henry always gave me room to write my own journal papers, to develop my research projects and he encouraged me to join any training programmes which were beneficial to my career. He did not only guide me to write fellowship applications but also provided massive support in my Wellcome Trust fellowship application. Without his help, I cannot not be where I am today. He showed his commitment and strong sense of responsibilities by leading the research team to achieve those milestones, and actively involving in research design, paper writing and data collection. He was accountable and obligate to his colleagues, and always fulfilled what he promised. Henry was passionate with perseverance in his work. Henry’s erudite works are like awe-inspiring firework which always give impressive insights and drive readers to wow. His passion in research and writing always attracted people to work with him whole-heartedly. Henry did face different challenges at work, yet I rarely heard from Henry any complaint, judgement or blame. Rather he put himself in other people’s shoes to consider others’ needs first, a very exceptional leader who was like a candle consuming himself to illuminate others. I heard Henry sharing his stories about his time with his grandchildren, with his daughter in Bristol and siblings in California, which I know he cherished and loved his family very much. It has been very hard to accept that Henry is no longer with us and I cannot hold my tears writing about my memory with Henry and I miss his impressive characters, smile, and virtues a lot, but I am sure Henry is now resting in peace and he will always be in our heart. Henry, part of the Red River Valley lyric expressed my missing of you: “From this valley they say you are going, We will miss your bright eyes and sweet smile. For they say you are taking the sunshine That has brightened our pathway a while.” May peace and comfort be with Henry’s family. Ray Chan

Professor Henry Buller made a great contribution to the University of Exeter Grand Challenges programme in his role as an academic lead for the Food for Thought Challenge in the period 2015-2016. We were very lucky to have Henry in the team of academic and professional services colleagues developing and delivering this programme and to this day we consider Henry as part of the Grand Challenges family. Henry was an inspirational leader of an interdisciplinary team, always open to new ways of working and bringing arts and sciences together for the benefit of students. Speaking on behalf of the Grand Challenges team, we are sad that we have lost a friend and a colleague who will be greatly missed. Personally, I will always remember Henry for the image of a large teddy rabbit which he used for his profile photo on the website. Anka Djordjevic, Grand Challenges 

I was very sorry to learn of Henry's passingHe was a huge inspiration to me and I knew his kindness and generosity first-handMy deepest condolences to his family and colleagues. Julie Urbanik 

 My deepest condolences to the family. I didn’t know Dr. Buller personally, however his professional career had a deep impact on my own. Coming across Dr. Buller’s work always brought me these “ah ha” moments. I am so grateful for his work, as are many others (both human and non). May he rest in peace. Carley MacKay 

I am so very sorry to hear this news. Henry was an inspiration in so many ways. I always looked forward to bumping into him at conferences and meetings, where he would lift spirits, flatten hierarchies and inspire thinking. He was always generous with his time, supportive and entirely without pretence – a true model for senior academics. My deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. Chris Bear 

RIP Henry. Your wit and wisdom will be sorely missed in the various academic and policy circles in which we mixed. Always good company, I count myself lucky to have been one of many beneficiaries of Henry’s peerless knowledge of Parisian eateries and English punk. My condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. Sarah Whatmore 

So sorry to hear of Henry’s passing. He was a brilliant academic and a very caring person. Henry was on the research team for the first project I worked on (October 2000). I was the RA and Henry was one of the Co-Is. I can still see him now joining the first meeting we held at The Countryside Agency in Cheltenham – crazy hair and a big smile, and full of amazing ideas and creative things we could do for the project. Henry was working then at what was called ‘CCRU’, which is where I work now (but called ‘CCRI’). Carol Morris was also on the CCRU team, and with Brian Ilbery, Moya Kneafsey and myself on the Coventry University team. It was a fantastic project to work on, and Henry would often send us papers with new ideas late at night. He was such a bright and imaginative thinker. Needless to say, we wrote a bunch of great papers from the project (as well as the contract report!). I learnt so much from that first project. We remained friends ever since and he always gave me great advice and encouragement in my work, especially in the early years. Such a star, gone far too soon. Damian Maye

I am genuinely saddened to learn of the untimely passing of Henry. I had the good fortunate to work with him on a number of different projects when we were employed at the CCRI, University of Gloucestershire and subsequently at the University of Exeter. Henry facilitated my move into human-animal studies and introduced me to many different ways of thinking. He was infinitely wise and great fun and his love of food was legendary. Thank you Henry for helping me along the way in my working life. You will be much missed. Carol Morris, University of Nottingham

Henry was the most wonderful colleague.  We joined the Geography Department at Exeter within six months of each other almost twenty years ago.  Henry arrived first, and one of the reasons I was attracted to work in the department was because Henry had just joined it.  Our paths had crossed at conferences and workshops and we knew each other in the way that academics who work on similar topics do.  He always seemed a great person to be around, but it wasn’t until I arrived at Exeter that I fully realised just how kind, supportive, and generous Henry was, with his wonderful sense of humour and huge stock of knowledge and stories.  The word collegiate could have been invented for Henry, and he was a brilliant colleague to travel with.  I particularly remember a fieldtrip to Bordeaux, with Henry and Jo, where his unrivalled knowledge of French culture, French agriculture and French viticulture came in especially handy. Henry of course used this knowledge to make a huge contribution to geographical scholarship, and he was always looking to explore new avenues in new ways.  He was one of a small group who revolutionised the study of rural economies and societies, and he was constantly pushing at the boundaries of these areas. I feel lucky to have worked with him, and my thoughts and condolences are with his family. Mark Goodwin

It is with great sadness that I learnt of Henry’s premature death. My sympathies go out to his family and colleagues. I first met Henry as an undergraduate at UCL in 1979. In fact, he was the first student I spoke too as we entered the geography department at the same time on the first day. He had a huge mass of black hair and was wearing his trademark black duffle coat, with a dodgy pocket, some months afterwards to be accessorised with string for a belt. I thought now here is someone worth getting to know. I was absolutely right. He was a good friend to me during this period. Every time we would meet there was something new that he had developed an interest in since we last met. Even if we had spoken the previous day. Not just geography but philosophy, film, art; he had something worth discussing on most topics. He was Wikipedia before Wikipedia.  He knew where all the obscure events were in London and made the most of his undergraduate years. He once went to a “music for socialism” seminar given by Brian Eno, Brain Eno probably learnt a lot that night, along with the other five attendees. He was a great guitar player and went with me to buy a guitar after graduating and made me an instructional tape which I still have. He also developed an interest in photography which came in handy when I got married. I appointed him as the wedding photographer and again he did a great job.  He was always kind and generous with his time and visited us “up north” a few times. We took him on a daytrip to Blackpool, this was probably his catalyst to moving to Paris a year or so later.  With Henry it wasn’t just the intellectual highbrow stuff, he was pretty good at lowbrow stuff too. On a visit to London, we had to make sure that we were back in time for “Dallas” his favourite show at the time. It was fascinating to watch him watching it, he was absolutely invested in the show. His impersonation of Sue Ellen was a wonder to behold. It is no surprise to me that he went on to have a successful academic career; nor that he will be missed by his colleagues and students alike. There will be a lot of people, like me, who met him on the way who will miss him too and the difference he made to our lives. Nigel

I only knew Henry for what feels like a very short time, during the spring term of 2021 at the height of the COVID pandemic. I was reasonably fresh out of completing my PhD at the time and had held a few brief teaching posts elsewhere, but nothing so significant as the opportunity of working with him in the Department – albeit from my childhood bedroom during the pandemic. As my first Head of Department in a teaching post, he continues to have a lasting influence on how I approach collaboration and my own teaching and pedagogic practice. He always had an unlimited energy and enthusiasm whenever we spoke, whenever I went to him for advice no matter on how big or small a problem he always had time. He was always there to listen and offer his wise and kindly advice, thoughts and reflections to even the most junior of colleagues (and no matter how daft my ideas may have been in our regular meetings), unwaveringly generous with his time. That, I think, is what I will remember the most about him. I was very saddened to hear of his passing, and I wish to send my heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and everyone who had the pleasure and the privilege of knowing him for however short or long a time. To Henry, you will be sorely missed. Thank you for inspiring and continuing to inspire. Geoff Main

I am saddened to hear of Henry's passing, and moved to read these tributes. Henry was a singular figure in rural studies, someone who could cross disciplines and cultures with ease. His intellect was sharp and not afraid of critique, but he always practised it with courtesy and support for younger colleagues and students. Most of all, Henry was great company, with interest in others, wry humour, and an enthusiasm for good food. Rest in Peace Henry. Michael Woods

I am not at Henry’s funeral, but today I will pause everything to remember him, and his work. Wherever I look for work on humans and animals, I see his footprints. When starting out on any project, it was always a relief to know that he had written on a topic. So many people will follow your ideas and your example, Henry. The ripples will go on and on…. Pru Hobson-West, University of Nottingham 

 Generosity and excellent geographer.  Angel Paniagua 

It felt impossible to leave a conversation with Henry without smiling. His irrepressible enthusiasm for interdisciplinary understanding of the world around us was what struck me first. One of the first projects I remember was the study of the relationship between cattle and sheep welfare, biodiversity of pasture and the quality and taste of meat produced. It seemed very Henry – academic, rigorous, important, with clear implications for land use policy and it was clear that Henry loved the study. To leadership he brought a great combination of fairness, concern for colleagues and students and ambition for improvement. No matter what the context of my interactions with Henry, he was always such a joy to work with and spend time with. Henry has contributed so much to his field, our department and University, it is difficult to imagine Geography and Exeter without him. My deepest condolences to his family and friends. Thanks Henry. Tim Quine 

“Hi Tom… you’ve done it - we’d like to offer you the job!” – I will always remember the phone call I got from Henry to tell me I’d been successful in my application to become a permanent member of staff at Exeter. Not just because of the relief I felt, but also the warmth of that conversation – Henry was so pleased for me. I shouldn’t have been surprised, Henry cared deeply for his colleagues and offered support and guidance to everyone, regardless of career stage. He wanted everyone to do well and did such a great job of acknowledging the hard work everyone put in. We are lucky at Exeter – our department is cohesive, collegiate and exceptionally supportive. Henry’s contributions to this cannot be understated – particularly during his time as Head of Department, through which he navigated some of the most challenging circumstances possible, always with good humour and a warm smile. I never worked with Henry to teach or undertake research, but he helped make this a ‘good place to work’ and for that we will always be thankful. I regret not talking with Henry more about his love and knowledge of music. I used to enjoy the musical suggestions that periodically came with his departmental emails – I offered my own favourites in return once or twice, and of course he knew them all already! I really wish I’d taken the time to ask him for more recommendations. A fantastic geographer and more importantly a kind and gentle human being. We will miss you so much, Henry. Tom Roland 

It's taken me a long time to be able to write this. At the end of the week in which Henry died, Nicola (HOD in Geography) put it well when she said it was a week in which every day had been walked with Henry alongside. Feels like I can say the same thing in relation to my career – Henry walked alongside – from being PhD students at the same time through middle career angst and decisions around moving jobs and institutions to the later stages of our careers and the 20 years in Exeter. I am immensely grateful that I’ve had a career in which Henry’s ideas, intellect, enthusiasm and sense of fun were a constant. I realise only now how much I relied on his support and encouragement for my own work – indeed I took those things for granted, as I did his ability to make work seem not like work at all. Henry’s sheer joy of working with academic ideas was so inspirational – many times, even in the middle of some sort of ridiculous University politics, he would say that he could never get over that this was his job and that he was allowed to do what he loved, with people he enjoyed being with and get paid for it. He really did see himself as very lucky – whereas we all saw ourselves as lucky to have him there. Perhaps my strongest memories of working with Henry were from the Exeter Geography New York fieldtrip. It was such a privilege to do that for 9-10 years (and so sad that we never managed that final trip in 2020). On those fieldtrips Henry was quite simply in his element – making use of his impressive knowledge of the Geography of NYC. But it was his infectious enthusiasm for the city, its culture and history that I’m sure those who were lucky enough to join him on (what was certainly HIS trip) will remember best. Of course his enthusiasm had a tendency to go off in all directions – especially in his reference to obscure 70s rock bands (much to the increasing bemusement of students) or to films watched mainly by teenage girls. It was a delight discovering all those places with Henry over the years and of course we developed our favourites - Manhattan Portage, Collet Pond, The Ellis Island ferry. But the favourite of all has to be Bennies – the Mexican student restaurant that we always seemed to take half the evening to find – famed for its frozen Margaritas. For Henry that became the sort of emblem of the fieldtrip. I’m sorry we never got to share a final Margarita, Henry, my dear friend. Thanks so so much for walking those streets of NY with me, as well as all the others. I miss you so much. Jo 

 From his fascinating and pioneering work with the British in France to animals and foods, Henry was such an engaging influence on my work and thinking.  And from those coneferences, too, with fine foods and finer still wine on the agenda very definitely too.  Such a shock to hear yesterday of his passing.  A really great all round guy! All the best... santé!  Keith Halfacree

Reading all the tributes to Henry made me realise how I wish our paths had crossed on more that those fleeting occasions when we were at the same conferences or meetings over the last 40 years. It also makes me realise that despite these being relatively brief encounters my impression of his warmth, insight, enthusiasm and quite simply his love of life were infectiously present all the time. My thoughts are with his family and colleagues at this sad time and the mark he made on our discipline and our lives continues on indelibly.  Nigel Walford

I have known Henry for over 30 years, first when he was working in Paris and, later, once he'd returned to the UK, especially when he moved to Exeter.I met him regularly at conferences and he always had an interesting perspective on current ideas and thinking. He encouraged others and he was an extremely perceptive and innovative thinker. As an external examiner at Exeter I observed his impact on the Department of Geography and the affection in which he was held. I found his writing inspirational and he influenced sio many in the discipline. Taken far too soon, I shall miss his warmth and bonhomie but will remember him with great affection.  Guy Robinson

Henry was irreverent, kind & humane, a joyous man. He was a wonderful colleague, so generous & supportive. I will miss him enormously. Henry was a constant positive influence and a source of fun and collegiality for me and so many colleagues, both within and beyond the geography department at Exeter. On a personal note, as a colleague, Henry represents so much of my experience of working at Exeter. He asked me one of the most interesting questions I received in my interview for the job and when I began in the department he enthusiastically encouraged my interests in both teaching and research. As a fellow traveller, academically and on the trains to and from Exeter, I spent many hours discussing anything and everything, from the possible English translations of French philosophical terms to Dr Who and the Kardashians. He supported me, as Head of Department, through some of the hardest moments in my personal life with care and sensitivity. He shared in the joys and celebrations of the good times. I have no doubt that his influence on my life and career, amongst many others, will be long-lasting and be a testament to his care and his humour.  Sam

 I saw Henry present around the same time I started my PhD- a wonderfully provocative and playful paper about wolves, killing and animal morality. Several years later he became the external examiner for my PhD. His work remains inspiring, as has his generosity, kindness and capability to make people feel at ease. He has left an indelible mark on critical geography, particularly through his engagements with animal, more-than-human and rural research. Condolences to all his family, friends and colleagues.  Kieran

 Dear Henry, it was a privilege to have ever known and worked with you.  May the long time sun shine upon you, all love surround you and the pure light within guide you on your way.  You will be greatly missed.  Caroline (colleague)

  am so deeply saddened to hear of Henry’s passing. I worked with Henry on many occasions when I looked after the recruitment for geography. He was and still is, the kindest and most wonderful person I have ever worked with. I remember meeting with him when I was new to my role and the university and his warm smile and boundless enthusiasm during our first encounter has always stayed with me. To say he was a pleasure to work with would be an understatement. Getting a call from Henry would always make my day and I would often tell him (and anyone else who would listen) that he was my absolute favourite person to work with. I don’t think I ever ended a conversation with Henry without smiles and laughter involved. He was impossibly kind and generous. I was lucky enough to experience this personally when Henry gave me an above and beyond for helping him with his recruitment. I was able to use this to buy some much needed art supplies so I could take up painting again. I always enjoyed bumping into him on campus and will always remember the way he could make you feel like the most important person in the room. He was always so interested in other people and what they had to say. He truly was an incredibly special person and had a lasting impact on everyone who knew him. You will be dearly missed Henry. My deepest heartfelt condolences to your family friends.  Harriet Green

 A few years ago, myself and Ian asked for "interesting facts" from our colleagues for a Christmas quiz.  We only wanted one from each staff member, but Henry's life was so interesting that he provided us a list which we had difficulty choosing from.  I found myself laughing out loud at many of them, wondering if they could actually be true!  Henry's humour, warmth and eccentricity will be much missed around the department, but I will look back at those answers when I need a bit of 'Henry perspective' on life.  Thanks for all the help you gave me Henry, you are missed.  Anne Le Brocq 

 I am greatly saddened to hear the news of Henry’s death. I had the honour and privilege of working alongside Henry as a young researcher at Oxford Polytechnic in the mid-1980s. Over and above Henry’s intellectual and academic prowess, he was one of those rare people who always made you feel better after bumping into him than you did before.  He was clever and funny, with a phenomenal work ethic.  Sadly, our paths hadn't crossed for many years but I still remember his tale from that time of travelling to interview a motor cycle club somewhere in the West Midlands about their use of green belt land.  Twenty or so minutes into his interview with club members (probably conducted over a pint around a table in the clubhouse) there was a tap on the microphone and the MC for the evening announced over the PA system that Henry had kindly travelled up from Oxford to address them that evening on the topic of informal land uses in the green belt.  This required Henry to pretty much invent a lecture on the spot.  I'm sure he managed it with aplomb.  May I send my sincere condolences to Henry’s family, friends and colleagues.  Paul McNamara

 I have only now, six months late, heard of the sad passing of delightful, funny, warm, caring, kind Henry. I have many fond memories of Henry in the department, but it was our field trips to New York that will always stand out for me. Each morning at Starbucks, when the barista asked his name, he would give a different and highly improbable answer. I would be laughing so hard at the names he gave, that I would then struggle to make my own order. Then, as soon as he sent our students trekking off through below-zero Manhattan, he would sniff out the best apple pie and ice cream in the city, which we would enjoy at our leisure, until it was time to meet up with our students. He knew every great place to eat in Manhattan and regaled us with amazing stories of the city (his own and the rest of the world's). I will never forget Henry's exuberance and enthusiasm for life, for joy, for knowledge. The world is a little greyer without him. X  Martina Tyrrell