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McKINNON, Neil Nairn, QC (1909-1988)

Neil McKinnon (Cricket, 1926).

Neil McKinnon (Cricket, 1926).

McKINNON, Judge Neil Nairn, QC (1909-1988)

High Court Judge, Neil Nairn McKinnon was born at Ascot Vale on 19 August, 1909, the son of Neil Somerville McKinnon (1870-?)and Christina nee MacCauley.

His father, Neil Somerville McKinnon was the son of James McKinnon (1827-1908) who had been born in Rothesay, Scotland and died at Korongvale. Neil Nairn attended Hay High School and at the time he entered the College in 1926, was resident at 'Aratong' near Deniliquin. He boarded at the College from February 1926 until April, 1927. He emigrated to England in 1930 and studied law at Jesus College, Cambridge University and was reported as doing well there by Pegasus in March 1933 and February 1934. While at Cambridge he had become a member of the Reserve Air Force being confirmed in rank as a Pilot Officer on 19 March 1932. By 25 July 1933 he had been appointed a Flying Officer. He was called to the Bar by Lincoln's Inn in 1937.

From 1939 to October, 1945 he served in the Royal Air Force and, from 19 August, 1942 as a Flight Lieutenant in the Administrative and Special Duties Branch. In 1957, he took Silk and from 1961 until 1968 served as Recorder of Maidstone. He became a Commissioner at the Central Criminal Court in 1967 and was appointed an Additional Judge in 1968, becoming a Circuit Judge in 1972 by virtue of the Courts Act 1971. He remained at the Central Criminal Court (Old Bailey) until his retirement.

Neil Mckinnon married Janetta Amelia nee Lilley (1912-1989) and had seven children, three of whom also practised law and became Judges. His brother Gordon (1912-1935), also attended the College in 1926 and 1930.

Sources: Henderson Correspondence; James Affleck (Comp) Geelong Collegians at the Second World War p375.
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