Jim Bradley, Australian athletics coach, Died at 94


Jim Bradley was born on May 17, 1921, and died on July 2, 2015.

He was a professional athletics coach, renowned for his innovative use of speedball for an athlete’s general preparation.

Jim is the only coach to have trained multiple winners of the four best known & most prestigious professional footraces in the world: the New Year Sprint (Scotland) 5 winners, the Stawell Gift (Australia) 2, the Bay Sheffield (Aust) 3 & the Burnie Gift (Aust) 2.

Jim Bradley was born in Edinburgh, Scotland in May 1921.

The second youngest of five children, Bradley’s father deserted the family, leaving Jim’s mother Maggie to raise five children in a single room tenement in Broughton Street.

To ease the burden, Jim two elder siblings were farmed out to relatives and friends.

His mother worked part-time as housekeeper to provide enough money for the family to survive.

Jim left school at fourteen to work with the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER), where he worked as a junior checker, keeping a record of the number of wagons and their weight in coal.

He supplemented his income by carting bottles of tea from local cafes to the workers in the rail yards.

At age 17 Bradley lost his railways job to a senior checker and without the prospect of another job lined up, he joined the army in February 1939.

He was placed in the Royal Army Services Corp, and soon found himself serving in the Middle East where he served four years, sustaining a few war injuries but fortunately nothing life-threatening.

Jim later served in France and Belgium and finally in East Berlin, where he remained until the end of the war in 1945.

Jim Bradley passed away at age 94 in July 2015 after a short illness.