Reminiscences of a Nearly Somebody

For most of his adult life, Peter Morrell followed a career in the Law. Qualified as a solicitor in 1970, he switched to being a barrister in 1974, enjoyed a busy practice as an advocate, mainly in the East Midlands, and was appointed a Circuit Judge in 1992. After he retired from the Circuit Bench in 2009, he continued to sit as a Mental Health Review Judge until his seventieth birthday in May 2014. However, before he became a lawyer and ever since, he has engaged with areas that have interested him unconnected with the Law. Reminiscences of a Nearly Somebody comprises five adventures. It opens with Wandervogel, which describes a walk Peter took in 1963, aged 18, alone through the Rhineland and the Black Forest, in what was then West Germany, where memories of World War II were still fresh; and often raw. In 1970, he embarked upon a political career, which Hustings charts from his role as a Conservative Party constituency treasurer, through his unsuccessful campaign in 1972 for election to the Peterborough City Council, to the Three-Day-Week general election of February 1974, when he stood as the Conservative candidate in the strongly Labour mining constituency of Ilkeston, Derbyshire. From very early, he aspired to be an author and Scribbling describes his efforts, culminating in the Pepynbridge trilogy of novels, published between 2015 and 2016; and, in 2018, a collection of his sermons, From the Pulpit, Home and Abroad. In Robed, he records how, following a curious interview and during a bizarre ceremony, he shed his barrister’s gown in favour of a Circuit Judge’s robe. In July 2008, Peter was ordained to the Anglican diaconate and, in the following year, to the Anglican priesthood. In Collared, he charts why and how that happened and shares some tales from his ministry, both before ordination, when he was a reader, and afterwards, as deacon and priest. Anecdotal, self-deprecating and sometimes humorous, Reminiscences of a Nearly Somebody tell of polymathic serendipity, all too rare in today’s world of narrow specialism. Peter is married to Mary. They have two grown-up daughters and a granddaughter and live in isolated rusticity in East Northamptonshire.