In a Conservation Blog, marine science advisor Debbie Freeman includes these memories of Bill and his lasting legacy:
As a lecturer, Bill was passionate, lively and inspirational. His eyes would widen and his arms would begin to wave enthusiastically, whether he was describing the life history of barnacles, the homing behaviour of limpets or the scientific value of having protected areas in the ocean. Later, as a postgraduate student at the Leigh Marine Laboratory, Bill was always there when we needed him, to talk – sometimes for hours – on ecology, politics, or virtually anything. Often it wasn’t until much later that we recognised the value of these conversations.