We lost a true legend today.

Following the sad news of Professor Stephen Hawking's death this morning, we remember the extraordinary man and the remarkable legacy he leaves behind.

In our official statement, Katherine Mathieson, Chief Executive of the British Science Association, said:

“The staff and trustees of the British Science Association are saddened to hear of the death of Stephen Hawking.

“He was a true genius who had a great admiration of and connection to the public. Most people, when he published ‘A Brief History of Time’, would have thought a book about physics would not sell. But Stephen knew people would want to read it – and it turned out they did. He simplified and explained, but without gimmicks. His assumption that people are curious about the Universe and black holes was true. He inspired us all to wonder.

“In turn, he was hugely admired by the public. This widespread admiration led brilliantly to his breaking down of the perceived boundaries between popular culture and science.

“Importantly, he showed that disability and difference are no barriers to success; he challenged perceptions. On a personal note, I remember him - from when I was a student at his university - speeding down the middle of the road to get around, because the pavements were too bumpy. It sent out a message that ‘it doesn’t matter what you look like, you can be a scientist here’.

”He will be sadly missed."