Director of Fair Access to Higher Education

Professor Les Ebdon, Director of Fair Access to Higher Education

Professor Les Ebdon CBE DL

Professor Ebdon has been Director of Fair Access to Higher Education since 1 September 2012. He was previously Vice Chancellor of the University of Bedfordshire.

That followed an illustrious career in analytical chemistry, including more than 250 publications and several awards.

Professor Ebdon obtained his PhD at Imperial College, London, then lectured at Makerere University in Uganda and Sheffield Hallam University, before becoming Reader in Analytical Chemistry at what is now the University of Plymouth. He was promoted to a personal chair in 1986, became Head of Environmental Sciences in 1989 and then, in the same year, Deputy Director. He was promoted to Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic) in 1992. He remained in that position until 2003, when he was appointed Vice Chancellor at the University of Luton and became Vice Chancellor of the University of Bedfordshire on its creation in 2006.

Professor Ebdon was awarded a CBE in 2009 for services to local and national higher education and was appointed Deputy Lieutenant of Bedfordshire in 2011. Since 2013 he has been listed as one of Britain’s 500 Most Influential People by Debrett’s.

Registered interests

Organisation in which interest exists

Nature of interest

Royal Society of Chemistry


Royal Society of Chemistry Pension Fund


Royal Society of the Arts


Baptist Union of Great Britain Education Chaplaincy Working Group


Luton Christian Education Trust

Vice Patron

United Nations Association – Luton


The Bedford Hospitals Charity

Vice President

The Bletchley Park Trust


Youth at Risk Advisory Board


Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Measurement Board


Further Education and Skills Ministerial Advisory Panel