A life dedicated to others
Published on: 19 Oct 2015
He was a gentleman, a friend to all and an unstinting champion of the Filton community whose like we will never see again.
Doug Daniels has died at the age of 93, his passing marked by a vocal chorus of both sadness and tributes in equal measure.
He died in Southmead Hospital last month after suffering a severe stroke at his home in Bradley Stoke.
He has been remembered by countless friends and associates in numerous walks of life, as well as members of his family.
Right up to his death he was a tireless worker for the community and had recently taken on the considerable responsibility of chairing the Filton Town Council finance committee.
Doug was born in Accrington, Lancashire, in 1922, attending Clitheroe Royal Grammar School before embarking on a career at the highest level in engineering.
Doug’s father Ernest suffered terrible injuries at Passchendale in World War I which meant Doug was unable to attend university.
He began his working life with Rover before moving to Rolls-Royce in Derby then Bristol, which became his home.
Doug never married and after the death of his father, he devoted his life to his mother Agnes (also known as Mary) and the many causes he took up.
After settling in Bristol, he was elected as a Conservative councillor to the former Northavon District Council in the late 1980s.
Yet his days as a councillor were only one facet of his community activism.
He was active in the Filton Twinning Association, the Filton Community Association and in recent years he was one of the most vocal supporters of the campaign to save the Filton Airfield.
At Rolls-Royce, where Doug was a senior design engineer, he had worked on the mighty Olympus engine for Concorde and it was a matter of profound sadness for him when it was announced the airfield would be closed, with homes to be built on the site.
He tackled the campaign with his usual mix of determination and courtesy, pressing decision makers and writing extensively in several newspapers.
Doug loved music, especially big band numbers, and he played the drums. He also organised several concerts at venues like the Colston Hall, including one which raised money to send underprivileged children on a trip to Belgium.
Doug was also a Freemason and held the London Grand Rank of Assistant Organist with the Grand Lodge of Freemasonry for Men and Women. He was also editor of their quarterly news letter.
In recent years he was elected onto Filton Town Council which he served with his usual dedication. When his apartment block at Newleaze House was demolished, Doug ensured that wherever he was relocated, he would still be able to be a Filton councillor.
At last month’s meeting of the council, a moment’s silence was held for Doug. Amid calls for a permanent memorial for Doug, council chairman Darryl Colllins said he agreed, describing Doug as a ‘first class public servant’.
l Doug’s funeral will take place on October 16 at Filton Church, St Peter’s, at 1pm. All are welcome. A private family cremation will take place later on the same day.