Remembered by Ian Adair
I first met Cliff at one of my early S.A.M.S. conventions, way back in the 1950's. I was a boy magician and he had a dealer stand under the banner of The Bradford Magic Studio. Later I found out that his firm was established in 1949 where he ran his business from his studio in Shipley, West Yorkshire.
Cliff had a very distinctive style of humour. He was and extremely good compere and I've had the pleasure of watching him in action many times, introducing acts in his roguish sort of way. He always claimed he was a cousin to comedy genius, Eric Morcambe, although some magicians took this as another 'roguish prank' of his. However, I can verify that at one time, hanging on the walls of the Stuart Hotel, Blackpool (formally the headquarters of the early Blackpool Conventions) was a framed photograph of him, surrounded by other photos of top stage and television personalities, all of whom were household names.
Cliff was an expert demonstrator and had his stand at many hundreds of conventions over the decades. In 1964 he was presented with the Dealer's Trophy at one of their British Ring Conventions.
The last time I met up with him was when I was a lecturer at one of the Secret Days of Magic held in Milton Keynes. He and his wife Joan (who passed away in recent years) had a stand and were selling their recognized brand of magic. Cliff tended to manufacture and sell his own exclusives, and as a boy magician, I remember purchasing his Slow Motion Three Card Effect for a matter of a couple of shillings. He manufactured Harold Beaumont's clever Gravity Glasses Tray effect which also featured coins which vanished and reappeared inside the glasses, Bongo's Die Through Mirror and other exclusives.
Cliff will surely be remembered by many as being a charming man, an accomplished performer and a dealer who ran a long-standing firm selling his own very special effects.
© Ian Adair, May 2011