The Kilbrandon LecturesLord Kilbrandon

Charles James Dalrymple Shaw PC, QC (1906-1989) was a Scottish advocate and Law Lord. Educated at Balliol College, Oxford and the University of Edinburgh, his practice as an advocate was interrupted by military service during the Second World War. Appointed a Sheriff in 1954, he was elevated to Judge in 1959, serving in the Court of Session, and taking the judicial title of Lord Kilbrandon, named after his home area of Kilbrandon in Argyll. Lord Kilbrandon left a major legacy in ways which continue to influence Scottish public life, principally by chairing two major committees of inquiry. The Kilbrandon Commission (1961-1964) was charged with reviewing systems and procedures for children appearing in Scottish Courts. Its report, Children and Young Persons Scotland, commonly referred to as the Kilbrandon Report, was radical in the sense that it proposed that children referred to the criminal justice system should be treated according to their needs. The report led directly to the now familiar Children’s Hearings system and a review of social work, formalised in the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968. Lord Kilbrandon also chaired the Royal Commission on the Constitution (1972-1973) recommending reforms which presaged devolved government in Scotland.

Heather Shaw, Lord Kilbrandon's granddaughter, gave a personal account of her grandfather's life at the 15th Kilbrandon Lecture. A transcript of her talk can be found here: Shaw - Lord Kilbrandon