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One Man's Judgment is the autobiography of one of Scotland's most able, popular and influential legal figures. Born in a Glasgow tenement in 1908, John Wheatley comes from a politically active family whose ideals he has maintained throughout a life distinguished by academic, legal and political achievements.
He entered Parliament as the Labour member for Edinburgh East in 1947 (a seat he held until 1954). That year saw many changes: already an advocate, he became a Privy Councillor, took silk, and was then appointed Solicitor General for Scotland. Six months later he was appointed Lord Advocate, and by the following year was piloting the Scottish Legal Aid Scheme through Parliament.
Between 1966 and 1969 he undertook the work for which he is best known, chairing the Royal Commission on Local Government in Scotland whose Reports led to sweeping reforms. In 1970 he was granted a life peerage, and from 1972 until his retirement in 1985 he acted as Lord Justice Clerk - a position which afforded him the opportunity to make his own contribution to legal and social debate.
Lord Wheatley's concerns and interests are extensive, and have earned him a place in the hearts of many. Housing, the health service, education, penal reform and the difficulties faced by children and the elderly are just some of the areas where he has been instrumental in effecting changes for the better, both in his professional capacity and through personal involvement.
One Man's Judgment tells the whole story. Lord Wheatley recounts his experiences and offers us his thoughts on such issues as capital and corporal punishment, sentencing policy and legal aid. Lawmaker, lawgiver, outspoken campaigner for justice in its widest sense, Lord Wheatley is a man whose autobiography makes fascinating reading.