A Law Unto Himself Globe columnist Peter Grant pays tribute to Rex Makin, Solicitor and Philanthropist who has died at the age of 91.

Rex Makin was made a Freeman of the City of Liverpool in 2003 – the first solicitor to receive the honour - and he was a tireless supporter of the arts.

But he will always be remembered as one of the most charismatic, media savvy legal brains to come out of Merseyside. He knew he had his enemies but he also had many fans from all walks of life.

Whether you were rich and famous or the man or woman in the street, Rex would have time for you, that is, if you had time for him.

He was born Elkan Rex Makin in Birkenhead in 1925 and the family moved across the Mersey when he was three.

The graduate from the University of Liverpool took pride in his city and was proud that people spoke of his legacy while he was still alive.

Roger Phillips, Radio Merseyside broadcaster said of Mr Makin: ‘’He was a generous man.

"He helped a lot of ordinary people and organisations around the city in a positive way. He is a part of the city’s history.’’

Roger met Rex through his wife Shirley when he was a school governor in early 70s.

I met Rex in 1992 when I returned to Liverpool after working in London.

I knew of him and that he would always champion the underdog. My dad, a docker, said he had represented him during an injury case on the docks.

He told me he had always wanted to be a journalist.

Rex, an acerbic writer, got his wish when he wrote a weekly column for the Liverpool Echo in 1993 and wrote it every week for over a decade till health forced him to stop his sometimes controversial diary of people and places.

He once introduced me at an art event as his ‘journalistic colleague.’ Rex loved to talk about newspapers. It was never, ever a dull moment in his company.

He spoke his mind and did not suffer fools gladly.

I recall being invited to his lovely house in leafy Woolton for an evening with fellow journalists and a superb dinner cooked by his loyal and loving wife Shirley who would accompany him to many first nights at local theatres.

Rex had a very inquiring mind and a wicked sense of humour. He admired Sir Ken Dodd. He loved the limelight, too.

I was also fortunate in knowing Rex for my work on Beatle books and articles.

He would tell me of those who people were there during the rise of Beatlemania (a phrase he coined when asked about the Fab Four’s popularity) and those who simply were making things up.

After all Rex was part of Beatle history.

He was the Epstein family solicitor and guided Brian in 1963 when he told him he wanted to sign the Beatles.

I shall remember Rex Makin not only for his high-profile cases such as Hillsborough and representing the Walton Sextuplets, but also for a personal encounter.

When my father died he spent time talking to me about bereavement and loss. It was a side to him many never saw.

It meant a lot to me. I shall never forget his kindness.

Rex Makin, solicitor, philanthropist and journalist.

Liverpool will never forget his contribution.