Born in 1897 at Henbury, Macclesfield, son of wheelwright, Henry and Mary (nee Stott), Cliffe, of Chelford Road, Macclesfield, one of thirteen surviving children, his elder brother, Albert Edwin, also died in the Great War.
When Frank attested at Macclesfield, 03/09/1914, he was working as a chauffeur, his army medical record states he was five feet five and a quarter inches tall weighed 126lbs with a thirty-six and half inch chest measurement, brown eyes and light brown hair, his religion was Church of England. He embarked with the B.E.F. for France, 26/09/1915.
Among his service records is an account of a Court Enquiry, held 21 September 1916, into the accidental wounding of three soldiers, one of which was, 14473, Private, Frank Cliffe. Witness, Lieutenant E.W.V. Leach, 2nd Battalion Royal Irish Rifles Brigade, Bombing Officer states; During Bombing practice on 21st inst; about 3.00 p.m. at the Brigade Bombing School, one of the squad was firing No 20 Hale Rifle Grenade; Private Cliffe and Johnston were firing a rifle grenade and on pressing the trigger the Grenade burst prematurely, wounded Pte’s Cliffe and Johnson, also Pte Hall who was standing in a trench about 20 yards away. These three men and the whole squad consisted of trained men who had had previous instruction and had all fired live rifle grenades before. It is difficult to state definitely the cause of this premature burst, but in all probability it was due to a defective Grenade. Signed, E.W.V. Leach. Lt.
This wound placed him in No 13, Stationary Hospital, once he had recovered from his wound to his right eye, he returned to his Regiment. Frank was taken prisoner, 01/06/1918, and he died in Forbach Reserve Hospital, Germany, at 11.00 a.m. Sunday, 17/11/1918, aged 21 years.
Researched and compiled by H.A.G Carlisle.