Biography of James Alfred Wight
James Alfred Wight
The James Herriot Library at Glasgow Veterinary School is named for James Alfred Wight (1916-1995), who became famous under the pseudonym James Herriot for his books of stories about the life of a country vet.
Wight was educated at the Glasgow Veterinary College and qualified as a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in 1939. After as short spell working in Sunderland he joined a practice in Thirsk in rural North Yorkshire, and began to write about his experiences. If Only They Could Talk was published in 1969, and it was followed by six more books, two films and a popular television series, All Creatures Great and Small. The author was appointed OBE in 1979.
Wight took the pseudonym James Herriot to avoid breaking Royal Academy of Veterinary Surgeons regulations regarding advertising. He chose the name after attending a football match in which the Scotland internationalist Jim Herriot played in goal for Birmingham City.