Born: August 9, 1955; Died: September 12, 2012.
COLIN Macleod, who has died aged 57, was an outstanding Scottish lawyer who specialised in the field of professional negligence. His wise counsel, expertise and intellect made him the first choice for fellow solicitors who needed legal guidance and professional help.
A senior partner with Dundas & Wilson, he joined the firm as a trainee and stayed with them for his entire career. Based in their Edinburgh office, his metier was commercial litigation, particularly insurance law. He worked closely with the Royal & Sun Alliance and Norwich Union insurance giants.
He was also a Law Society panel solicitor for professional indemnity, another area in which he excelled.
Such was the strength of his reputation that Chambers, the highly respected international guide to the legal profession, placed him in the top rank of solicitors involved in both commercial and professional litigation. It praised him for his strategic vision and "sheer breadth and depth of knowledge".
He was often described as "a lawyer's lawyer" and within Dundas & Wilson he headed up a highly esteemed group of legal experts whose raft of top class clients included many other solicitors as well as some of the country's leading architects and engineers. If a professional required advice on negligence claims laid against them then Mr Macleod was very often the first port of call.
As one colleague put it: "There are few people in life who rightfully acquire a reputation as a go-to person. But Colin was such a person."
He also served until recently as a non-executive member of Dundas & Wilson's board of management.
Born in Inverness and educated at Inverness Academy, he studied at Edinburgh University. After graduating with a degree in law in 1976 he was taken on as an apprentice by Dundas & Wilson. His outstanding qualities – a great intellect, a brilliant understanding of legal principles and more than his share of common sense – were quickly recognised and he was made a partner in the firm's court department in 1983.
At work Mr Macleod was an extraordinarily popular figure, the consummate professional but the soul of discretion, kindness and fairness. He also had a self-deprecating sense of humour.
Laurence Ward, chairman of Dundas & Wilson, said of him: "Colin was simply one of the best lawyers I have ever met. He was a man not only with a great intellect but also a common touch."
Another close colleague said: "He was just a really, really nice guy, a man who engaged his brain before opening his mouth."
Mr Macleod met his wife, Dierdre, when she was working as a secretary at the law firm. The couple, who lived in Fairmilehead, Edinburgh, had three children. They were delighted when, just a few months ago, their daughter Jenny gave birth to their first grandchild.
Away from work Mr Macleod enjoyed the pleasure of being with his family. He was an accomplished skier who took up the sport in his 30s. When his children were younger he often took them on ski-ing trips. Recently he had taken up golf.
He also had a huge interest in music with an extensive collection which focused on West Coast rock and blues.
His artists of choice were Bob Dylan, the Allman Brothers, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young and the English singer/songwriter and guitarist Richard Thompson.
Given his interest in West Coast music it is no surprise that Mr Macleod enjoyed travelling in America. He and his wife also often holidayed in Majorca.
Colin Macleod is survived by his wife Deirdre, children Jennifer, Graham and Neil, and grandson Dominic.
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