Roy Clough (OS 1941)
Stockport Grammar School was saddened to hear the news of Mr Clough’s death on 17th May 2015.
Mr Leigh, a friend and colleague of Mr Clough for almost 60 years, has shared the following tribute with us:
Roy was born on 9th September 1923 and died at age 91 on 17th May this year.
He was a bright lad, and won a Scholarship to SGS In 1934. He left in 1941 to start a course in mechanical engineering at the College of Technology in Manchester. During this period – like many others on the ‘home front’ at the time when the provinces including Manchester suffered heavy bombing raids – he served in the Home Guard, which was set up to provide some resistance to a possible airborne invasion. University life at that time was extremely difficult, and although the College was not badly damaged by the bombing learning there would have been very difficult.
But like many others at age 20, in 1943 his training was put on ‘hold’ and because of his background, he was directed (no one had a choice in wartime!) to join a team at Rolls Royce in Barnoldswick to work on aero gas turbine development. After the war ended he was then permitted to return to Manchester College (by then the Faculty of Technology at Manchester University) for his final year and obtained a very commendable First Class Honours B.Sc (Tech) in 1947. Afterwards Rolls Royce were glad to have him back at their main Derby works and he continued working on aero engines for a further 4 years.
He was keen to broaden his experience however, and was attracted by work at the Admiralty Engineering Laboratory. He spent 3 years there before moving into the exciting new world of nuclear power, moving to the Department of Atomic Energy (subsequently the UKAEA) at Risley in 1954. This provided him with adequate challenge for the rest of his career. He retired at age 60 after 29 years service.
Roy had a retiring disposition, and his wartime experiences left little time for frivolity, so perhaps it is not surprising that he remained unmarried. His main relaxation was walking – and the North West of England gave him plenty of opportunity for that.
After retiring he moved north a little to a bungalow on the outskirts of Bolton, but then decided that a smaller flat on the South Coast was all that he needed. So for about the last 15 years he lived in the small seaside village of Beer near Seaton in Devon. His faithful Morris Minor gave him all the mobility he needed, and he still kept in touch with his old Risley colleagues. There are are many that I know who have enjoyed his company in times long gone now, and the subsequent lengthy telephone chats. He was a good friend to many still in the North and we will all miss him.
Mr K M Leigh