03 March 2017

Poor health forces top legal Scot to retire from House of Lords

One of Scotland's most respected legal figures, crossbench peer Lord McCluskey, is to retire from the House of Lords on grounds of poor health.


Lord McCluskey, John McCluskey, 87, called to the bar in 1955 and took silk in 1967. He was made Solicitor General in 1974 and became a Senator of the College of Justice in 1984, leaving the bench in 2004. In 1973 he represented Paul McCartney who had been charged with growing cannabis on his farm in Machrihanish and famously asked the judge if his client could have ‘time to pay’ a £30 fine. He also worked on the original Scotland Bill in that decade, along with his tennis partner and friend, the Labour Leader, John Smith.


Lord McCluskey said: ‘I was appointed a peer in September 1976, when I was Solicitor-General for Scotland and played an active part in all the devolution legislation since then, including last year’s act amending the Scotland Act by devolving further powers to the Scottish Parliament and Executive.’ Source: Scottish Legal News

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