Passing of British Judo's Bob Bradley, 7th Dan Back

May 20, 2014

Wednesday, 21 May, 2014 - 01:40pm

It is with sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Bob Bradley, 7th Dan, who died recently after a tragic accident at his home.

Mr Bradley, 67, was found by emergency services on Tuesday. It is believed he fell through rotten flooring at his home.

Bob was self-taught with no definitive sensei. He gained his 1st Dan in 1971. He achieved 7th Dan in December 2001. He was a Pro-National Referee (National C grade referee today) and a senior examiner. He taught Judo in numerous schools in the Southern Area. Bob retired from Judo aged 47 after a very successful Judo career: Bob was British Open Champion for thirteen years during the late 1960s/1970s and early 1980s. He represented the Southern Area Team for approximately 25 Years in national and international competition. Bob was also he was a County Boxing Champion and was successful in his wrestling career for which he held the title of British Champion. Bob he also competed in sambo wrestling and was a Breton wrestling champion, never having competed in Breton wrestling before.

(The picture above shows Bob Bradley rising from his knees after holding his opponent for an ippon on his way to the heavyweight gold medal at the 1976 All England Championships.)

In addition to a fruitful Judo career, Bob had an great interest in wartime weaponry and memorabilia and was appointed Curator and ran Margate Museum until its closure in 2008.

Those who knew Bob held him with the highest regard and enormous respect. Barry James, Southern Area Chair, said that Bob had a quirky sense of humour and would be remembered fondly by all who knew him, particularly his colleagues in Belgium where Bob competed for the Area Team on numerous occasions. His good friend Nigel Biggs said that Bob’s knowledge of Judo was immense, he was always willing to help and it was Bob’s encouragement that set Nigel on his own Judo career path.

Tributes on the Thanet Gazette Facebook page to a man remembered as a judo champion and teacher, former St Saviour’s pupil and a "true gent.”

Frank Leppard said: "Bob was taught me judo and fought in the Kent county championships and worked at the local museum . If only more were like him . . Margate has lost one of its best. RIP Bob.”

Ralph Cella added: " The passing of Bob is a great shame. It is no way for a person to end his days. He was a good friend of my late father..he was also receiving treatment for advanced bowel cancer. RIP Bob.”

Bob will be sadly missed by his colleagues in the Judo world.


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