Private Lewis Hardy


This North Irish Horseman was probably the Lewis Andrew Hardy born on 1 August 1898 at 31 Queensland Street, Belfast, the ninth of ten children of cook (later hotel chef) Lewis Andrew Hardy and his wife Sarah (née Harding). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at 52 Bray Street, Shankill, Belfast, with his parents and three of his eight surviving siblings.

Hardy enlisted in the North Irish Horse on 24 May 1915 (No.1593), probably overstating his age by two years (he was only 16 at the time). He trained at the regiment's Antrim reserve depot before embarking for France in 1916 or early 1917. There he was posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st or 2nd North Irish Horse Regiments.

On 9 July 1917 Hardy was one of around thirty North Irish Horsemen who, being no longer physically fit for front-line service due to injury, age or illness, were transferred to the Labour Corps and posted to No.664 Home Service Labour Company. It appears, based on the records of some of these men, that they continued to serve at the North Irish Horse reserve depot at Antrim. Hardy was issued regimental number 333713. He remained with the Labour Corps until the end of the war.

On 20 February 1919 Hardy was discharged (or demobilised). He was granted a pension due to 'DAH' (disordered action of the heart), which was determined to be due to his military service. His level of disability was assessed at 30 per cent in November 1919.

Soon after the war Hardy was living with his family at 22 Lothair Avenue, Belfast.