Gwilym Clement Jones
It is with great sadness that we report the death of Gwilym, an Honorary Life Member of Buxton Mountain Rescue Team. Buxton Mountain Rescue Team was a huge and important part of Gwilym’s life.
Gwilym, or Gwil as we knew him, was born in Denbigh North Wales. He was a proud Welshman, indeed he only spoke Welsh until he went to school.
In his early years, he enjoyed a great many activities, including scouting, which led to his love of the outdoors.
Gwil had a varied career. He started as a storeman in the engineering sector, and later became a welder. He then went onto develop a career with Cheshire Police, where he undertook a great number of roles including working in CID, and as an armed response officer. However, it was as a rural beat officer in the eastern part of Cheshire, including Rainow, where he spent many happy years working his beat. Gwilym was a fine and proud rural policeman, and also received a commendation for rescuing a great many stranded motorists from the Cat and Fiddle in the bad winter of 1976, and recovering them safety to the Stanley Arms, where they spent 2 days before the roads were finally cleared.
Gwilym left the Police and worked for Crossville coaches as a driver. Towards the end of his working life he also worked as a court usher and then as a security guard.
Gwil had a keen love of the outdoors and spent many happy family holidays in North Wales and the Lake District. Gwil was a family man at heart who met his wife Claire when she was three. They had their own family of 4, who gave them 12 grandchildren and 2 great grand children
Gwilym’s other passion was Buxton Mountain Rescue Team. Gwilym joined the team in 1976 and was an absolute rock within the team. Gwil was one of those team members that you were always glad to see on a call out. He was a larger than life figure, with a huge heart, ready to help anyone in any way he could.
His sons David and Paul were also team members for over 10 years, and his wife Claire, organised many fund raising and support events for the Team.
He held a number of roles within the team, but as equipment officer he would spend hundreds of hours maintaining all of the team equipment and vehicles and ensuring everything was safe and working correctly. This was way before the days of computers, but he could tell you the history of every piece of kit and when and how it had been maintained.
On team social trips to Scotland, his culinary skills were legendary, and he gladly cooked for everyone on those trips away. Woe betide any member who got off the hill late and missed the evening meal. He was also head chef at many a team BBQ at Dale head in Edale. After cooking hundreds of burgers and sausages, he was also not a stranger to leading the team “sing a longs”, of course, accompanied by a couple of pints.
Gwil retired from the Team in 2001 through ill health but would frequently come to social events when he could to catch up with Team members. Gwil spent his later years in a care home in Leek.
The Team was honoured to be able to lead the funeral cortege and Team Leader Neil Carruthers said “I have met many fine people in my career in mountain rescue, but none better than Gwilym. He was a true friend, who will be sadly missed but fondly remembered by all of those who were fortunate enough to work with him”.