John MacDermott, Baron MacDermott
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Born in 1896, MacDermott was educated at Campbell College, Belfast, and the Queen's University of Belfast. After serving with the Machine Guns Corps in France, Belgium and Germany during the First World War, for which he was awarded the Military Cross and reached the rank of Lieutenant, MacDermott was called to the Irish bar in 1921.
Eight years later he was appointed to determine industrial assurance disputes in Northern Ireland, and in 1931 he became a lecturer in Jurisprudence at Queen's University, teaching for four years.
In 1940, MacDermott was appointed Minister of Public Security in the Government of Northern Ireland, and the following year became the Attorney General for Northern Ireland. He was succeeded in this post by William Lowry, whose son, Lord Lowry, would eventually succeed MacDermott as Lord Chief Justice. In 1944 he resigned his parliamentary seat on appointment as a High Court Judge for Northern Ireland, and three years later, on 23 April 1947 was made a Lord of Appeal in Ordinary, effectively becoming a life peer as Baron MacDermott, of Belmont in the City of Belfast.
Lord MacDermott returned from the House of Lords to take up his appointment as Lord Chief Justice of Northern Ireland; his successors to the latter office have become Law Lords subsequently. Whilst LCJ he was affectionately known as "the baron".
In 1977, aged over eighty, Lord MacDermott offered to redeliver a lecture at the Ulster College, which had been interrupted by a bomb meant for him and which had severely wounded him.
Four years later, in 1951, he was appointed Lord Chief Justice of Northern Ireland, a post he held for twenty years. He was also Pro-Chancellor of his alma mater from 1951 to 1969. In 1958, he chaired the commission on the Isle of Man Constitution. He died in 1979.
In 1926, he wed Louise Palmer Johnston, later Lady MacDermott. Their son, Sir John MacDermott, was also sworn into the UK Privy Council in 1987, as a Lord Justice of Appeal in Northern Ireland. He later became a Surveillance Commissioner for Northern Ireland.
|Parliament of Northern Ireland|
John Hanna Robb
Robert James Johnstone
Arthur Brownlow Mitchell
| Member of Parliament for Queen's University of Belfast
With: Robert Corkey to 1943
Robert James Johnstone to 1938
Arthur Brownlow Mitchell to 1942
Howard Stevenson from 1938
William Lyle from 1942
John W. Renshaw from 1943
John W. Renshaw
|New office|| Minister of Public Security
| Attorney General for Northern Ireland
| Lord Chief Justice of Northern Ireland