Obituary - Harry Jordan
IT WAS with deep regret that I heard of the passing of my very close friend Haj. He had been seriously ill for several weeks and had been in and out of hospital four times. Unfortunately he died in the very hospital that he really detested, St Marys at Paddington. He was 83 years old and had lived life to the full.
It was first introduced to Harry back in 1961 when I was exhibiting at the TA Drill Hall at White City just a stones throw from Hammersmith, the Society of which he was secretary. Harry held this position from the late 1950s through until his retirement in the early 90s.
He successfully exhibited Longhaired Dachshunds in the 50s and 60s but decided that judging was his real forte and after concentrating on the hound breeds in his early years he quickly became established as one of the leading all-rounders not only in the United Kingdom but throughout the world. Before his death he awarded CCs in no less than 126 breeds.
Harrys beloved Hammersmith CS prospered greatly over the years reaching its peak in the 1980s when it boasted of scheduling every single breed with large classifications. Harry and his committee were noted for using overseas judges and by doing this as well as offering solid gold medals the society attracted enormous entries in most breeds.
I first judged at his show in 1963 and subsequently judged every single breed scheduled there over a period of some 25 years. For this I owe Harry a great deal as it was his encouragement that took me, as a judge, to the very top. We became close friends and enjoyed each others company despite some of the terrible practical jokes that I played on him over the years.
I had the pleasure in proposing him for Honorary Life Membership of the Kennel Club and he had unanimous backing from the membership. He was extremely proud of this position.
In 1996 Harry was given the great accolade of judging Best in Show at Crufts which he did with so much pride.
He leaves behind a son, John, and two grandchildren. With his parting we have lost one of the last characters of the dog game.
Bill Moores writes:
Harry Jordan accepted Crufts invitation to judge best in show in 1996 as a great accolade. He was then already one of the top international judges of all breeds, groups and best in show, having judged at most prestigious shows around the world.
Born into a household of dogs and a menagerie of other livestock, he bred GSDs before the war, the next few years being spent in the Far East and whilst there he first saw the Smoothhaired Dachshund. Shortly after returning to the UK he and his wife, Biddy, established the Danjor prefix of Longhaired and later Miniature Dachshunds. They bred champions in the UK and in several other countries. In some countries in the 50s and 60s they were the very first of their breed. Other breeds kept or handled by him included Afghans, Borzois, Irish Wolfhounds and Italian Greyhounds.
Not many people knew that he spent 34 years with the RSPCA dealing with animal welfare to which he was given the Queen Victoria award.
He was Vice President of the Great Joint Dachshund Association and the Longhaired Dachshund Club, a founder member of the Hound Association and a life member and had served on the Committee since its inception. he had also served as a member of the Kennel Club Regional Liaison Council since 1961 and was at one time the Councils Chairman. He was elected a Honorary Life Member of the Kennel Club in the late 1990s.
Winston Wall (Higham Press) writes:
I met up with Harry Jordan (HAJ) forty years ago. Breeder of Dachshunds, Secretary of Hammersmith C.S. and connected with the Southwark Lodge of Freemasons. He was an enthusiastic All Round Judge and sometimes he would call at Higham en-route to one of his many appointments. For many years he was closely associated with the RSPCA and did some good works for them. Above all Harry was a great character and will be remembered with great affection.