- Category : 1923-births
- Type : PE
- Profile : 4/6 - Opportunistic / Role Model
- Definition : Split - Small (12,28)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Contagion 2
Anglo-Canadian journalist, novelist, playwright and gay rights campaigner. He was one of the first men in the UK to publicly declare his homosexuality.
In the summer of 1953 Wildeblood hosted an intimate party with four men. Arrested on 9 January 1954, in March of that year Wildeblood was brought before the British courts charged with "conspiracy to incite certain male persons to commit serious offences with male persons" (or "buggery"). Wildeblood was charged along with two other men, and during the course of the trial he admitted his homosexuality to the court. Wildeblood was sentenced to 18 months in prison as a result of these and other charges. The result of the trial led to an inquiry resulting in the Wolfenden Report, which in 1957 recommended the decriminalisation of homosexuality in the UK. Wildeblood's testimony to the Wolfenden committee was influential on its recommendations.
He published a book on the case, Against the Law, in 1955, an account which detailed his experiences at the hands of the law and the British establishment, brought to light the appalling conditions in HM Prison Wormwood Scrubs, and encouraged campaigns for prison reform and for reform of law regarding homosexuality.
He wrote a second book on the subject of homosexuality the following year, propelled by the strong response to Against the Law from people who contacted him directly to say how grateful they were for bringing the subject into the open. A Way of Life included twelve essays describing different lives lived with homosexuality among people with whom he had come in contact. The essays served further to normalise homosexuality and reveal its then still hidden existence in all walks of life.
Male homosexuality was decriminalised in England and Wales in 1967.
After the trial and his subsequent imprisonment, Wildeblood became a television producer and writer.
He moved to Canada, becoming a citizen of the country in the 1980s. In 1994, he suffered a stroke which left him speechless and a quadriplegic. He died in Victoria, British Columbia, on 14 November 1999.