Radcliffe on Trent Local History Society

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Boy Rescued from the River Trent at Radcliffe

The Nottingham Evening Post reported a story on Thursday 20 October 1932 about 2 Radcliffe boys.

Aubrey Taylor, a 9-year-old from Bolton Terrace rescued Clifford Daniel from drowning by the wharf. Cliff was 14 and from Mount Pleasant. Aubrey had learned to swim only a year earlier and had been bathing in the Trent near the bend at Radcliffe on the evening of 21 June 1932. He noticed Clifford in difficulties in the middle of the river and managed to drag the unconscious Clifford to the bank where some older boys resuscitated him.

Aubrey's rewards included £10 from the Carnegie Hero Fund Trustees, a post office savings book containing £10 and an inscribed gold watch from the Radcliffe Branch of the British Legion.

Clifford Daniel was born in Radcliffe on 25 September 1918 and was one of 9 children born to Tom and Emily Daniel.  His father Tom served in the first world war with the 4th Leicestershire regiment and they lived on Mount Pleasant in the village. Cliff volunteered to join the Enniskillen Dragoon Guards at the outbreak of the second world war and whilst his regiment was stationed in Skegness he met Rita Harper, and he married her on 8 November 1945 at St Marys church.  Rita says he had a charmed life. Not only did Cliff survive Dunkirk he also survived peritonitis whilst in the army.

They first started married life in his father's house but then moved to Mrs Woolfit's farm on Ridge Lane in a converted tramcar that had been used to house evacuees. Their next house was at 5 Westcliffe Avenue and this became the home where they raised their family; Clifford (also known as Danny), Peter, Jeremy and Hilary. After the war Cliff became a driver for Saxondale Hospital where he drove prisoners of war to work on various farms in the area. Rita worked there as a secretary. Cliff loved playing darts where he was a valued member of the team at The Cliffe Inn (as his father had been before him) he also enjoyed playing his mouth organ to his fellow soldiers and later on to the residents of the care homes in the village.

Cliff never ventured swimming again after his unfortunate accident back in 1932. Tragically when Cliff's niece aged 4 was drowned in the river in 1942, there was no Aubrey around to save her. Cliff died on 7th  February 2010.


Rita and Cliff