Master of Arts, Glasgow University, 1949. Bachelor of Laws, Glasgow University, 1951. Doctor of Laws (honorary), Glasgow University, 1982.
Doctor of Laws (honorary), Strathclyde University, Scotland, 1991. Doctor of Laws (honorary), Aberdeen University, Scotland, 1993. Dhc, Edinburgh, 1995.
Various positions, Scottish Office, Edinburgh, 1955-1978; permanent under secretary of state, Scottish Office, Edinburgh, 1978-1988; principal, vice chancellor, Glasgow U., 1988-1995; chancellor, Glasgow U., since 1996. Chairman Royal Commission Ancient and History Monuments, since 1995, Scottish Inheritance Fund, since 1996. Board directors Scottish Mutual Assurance plc, Glasgow.
Fellow Royal College Physicians and Surgeons (Glasgow, honorary, 1992), Royal Scottish Academy Music and Drama (honorary), 1995. Member New Club Edinburgh.
Married Marion Anne Forbes, April 6, 1956. Children: Graham, Andrew, Lindsey, Douglas.