Brian Watkins was born in Wales. He was educated at a local grammar school, the London School of Economics and Worcester College, Oxford. He served in the RAF and in the Colonial Service in Sierra Leone and Tristan da Cunha. He qualified as a Solicitor and taught at Manchester University. In his late thirties he entered HM Diplomatic Service serving in North America, Northern Ireland, Bermuda, Pakistan and as High Commissioner in Swaziland. On retirement he became a part time immigration Judge. He became involved in charitable work and served as High Sheriff of his home county of Went in 2004-05. Married with a grown up son and daughter, he divides his time between London, Wales and Vancouver.