Alec Clifford joined the 4th Queen’s Own Hussars on 1 August 1948.

He was a regular soldier and served on a five-year engagement. He spent his whole service in 4th Troop ‘A’ Squadron and served in Malaya during the Emergency: Hong Kong and the UK. In those days, he was known as “Ginger” because of the colour of his hair, and he will be remembered as a young-looking, likeable, cheerful soldier.

He was with 4th Troop when they were ambushed on the Jalong Road on 31 December 1948. Seven were killed and he himself was wounded. He survived various other escapades and was one of the few who served in this troop throughout the whole of the Malay tour.

In 1986 he set himself the task of tracing those who had served with the troop at the time of the ambush and also the relatives of those who were killed. Having found the majority, he kept everyone in touch and organised two very successful reunions, thus bringing together those who would never have met one another again. He built up a large collection of photographs taken in Malaya and was intensely proud of his Regiment.

On leaving the Army he worked for Fullers Earth, but in recent years suffered from poor health. He bore his illness with great courage and died on 14th October 1993. Very sadly, his wife Margaret, who had nursed him throughout his illness, died unexpectedly three days before him.

The troop was well represented at his funeral. They leave a son and a daughter, both of whom are married.

Alec was a popular soldier, and there are many who have good reason to be grateful to him. He will be remembered with great affection.

Related topics

  1. A short history of The 4th Hussars
  2. Timeline: Malaya 1948-51
  3. Article: The Ambush of 4th Troop, ‘A’ Squadron, 4th Hussars