Vale The Honourable Roderick Pitt Meagher AO QC (1932-2011)
LLB 1958, BA 1954, LLD 2000
Sydney Law School mourns the death on Sunday 3 July 2011 of eminent alumnus and former Challis Lecturer in Equity and Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales Court of Appeal, The Honourable Roderick Pitt Meagher AO QC.
RP Meagher (affectionately known as Roddy by all) was a graduate of the University (BA 1954, LLB 1958) and was awarded Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) in 2000. In 1960 he began a long period of service as a part time lecturer to the Faculty of Law, where he lectured in Roman Law and held the title of Challis Lecturer in Equity. His lectures were a source of inspiration and challenge for generations of law students. He was a co-author of the ground breaking Meagher Gummow and Lehane's Equity Doctrine and Remedies, and was a co-editor ofmany editions of Jacobs' Law of Trusts.
He practised at the Bar and soon become one of the nation's leaders in appellate advocacy, and was appointed as a Queen's Counsel, and a member of the New South Wales Bar Council, serving as its President in 1979-1981. He was appointed as a Judge of Appeal of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, where his qualities as a judge have been especially appreciated by law students because of the succinctness of his opinions and the sharp phrases which he often deployed against those of contrary views. He retired from the bench in 2004.
Roddy was well known for his passionate interest in the fine arts and for his extraordinary art collection, some of which was exhibited at the University's Art Gallery in 2009 in Collecting Passions and other exhibitions and he announced at that time his intention to bequeath this entire collection to the university.
View the obituary published in the Sydney Morning Herald