Private James Herald


James Herald was born on 10 December 1891 at 72 Boundary Street, Belfast, the fourth of eight children of general labourer William Herald and his wife Sarah (née Stewart). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living as a boarder at 12 Walnut Place, Belfast, and working as a groom.

Herald enlisted in the North Irish Horse between 11 and 30 December 1914 (No.1362 – later Corps of Hussars No.71353). He trained at the regiment's Antrim reserve depot before embarking for France on 17 November 1915 with F Squadron, which at the time was serving as divisional cavalry to the 33rd Division.

In May and June 1916 F Squadron combined with C Squadron and the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons Service Squadron to form the 2nd North Irish Horse Regiment, and A, D and E Squadrons combined to form the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment, each serving as corps cavalry units.

At some point prior to mid-1917 Herald was either posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment, or returned to the reserve camp at Antrim, probably the latter. He was later attached to No.230 Employment Company of the Labour Corps.

Herald was subsequently transferred to the Corps of Dragoons (No. D/29793), where he was posted to the 2nd Dragoons (Royal Scots Greys).

Some records show that he served with the Dragoons for several years after the war. However according to others, he re-enlisted in the Royal Tank Corps (No.390868) on 30 January 1919, serving with that regiment until discharged on 26 August 1922 (his military conduct recorded as 'very good'). It is possible that after joining the Tank Corps he was re-attached to the Dragoons for the duration of his service.

On 26 May 1920 Herald married Jane Conn Shilliday at Ballynafeigh Methodist Church, Belfast. He died at his home, 110 Tates Avenue, Belfast, on 31 December 1972, and was buried in the Roselawn Cemetery.