Tom Johnston, wartime secretary for Scotland
- Published: Monday, 14 March 2011 14:53
THE day before the premature closure of Ravenscraig was announced I chanced to be in Caledonia Books, one of the excellent second-hand bookshops in the West End of Glasgow. Among my purchases was Memories, the autobiography of Tom Johnston, Secretary of State for Scotland during the war. He is remembered today mostly for the foundation of the Hydro-Electric Board but there was more to him than that.
When Churchill summoned him to London in 1941 and persuaded him -- rather against his will, for he wanted to write books -- to join the national Government he made two conditions. One was that he didn't want to take any money for office during the war. ''My resources are adequate to my needs and I don't want to make a song and dance about it.''