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Scottish Parliamentarian Sir Nicholas Fairbairn Dead at 61

February 19, 1995

LONDON (AP) _ Sir Nicholas Fairbairn, a Conservative member of Parliament who was admired for his acerbic wit and flamboyant style, has died. He was 61.

Downing Street said Fairbairn died late Saturday from the complications of a liver disease.

The Baron of Fordell was elected an MP in 1974, and represented the Scottish district of Perth and Kinross until his death.

He had one of the brightest legal minds of his generation and became the youngest man to be appointed Queen’s Counsel, or senior barrister, in Scotland at age 38. From 1979 to 1982 he was solicitor-general for Scotland.

A special election will be called to replace Fairbairn in the House of Commons. The Conservatives are at risk of losing the seat to the Scottish Nationalist Party, whose candidate came a close second in the 1992 general election.

Fairbairn was known for his unusual clothes, which he designed himself, his ready wit and his direct manner. In Who’s Who, he listed his recreations as ``drawing ships, making quips, confounding Whips (party leaders), scuttling drips.″ He often criticized his own party.

Martin Robb, chairman of the Perth and Kinross Conservative Association, paid tribute to ``the outstanding political contribution″ that Fairbairn made over the past 22 years.

``His colorful, dynamic personality will be sorely missed by his family, friends and supporters in the constituency as well as by his many friends and colleagues in the Palace of Westminster.

``Scottish political life today stands diminished by his loss.″

Fairbairn is survived by his wife and three daughters.

He will be buried in the family crypt at St. Theriot’s Chapel, Fordell Castle, in a private ceremony. A memorial service will be held at St. John’s Church in Perth.

The dates will be announced later.