Sergeant Thomas Watters Pyper


Thomas Watters Pyper was born on 17 October 1883 at Scrabo Isles, Newtownards, County Down, the second of two children of Model School teacher James Pyper and his wife Annie (formerly Keenan, born as Ryan). Around 1900 he joined the Belfast Banking Company – by 1910 he was an accountant in the bank's Regent Street, Newtownards branch. The following year he was living with his parents and brother at Ballygilbert, Bangor, County Down, still working as a bank clerk.

Pyper enlisted in the North Irish Horse between 2 and 7 December 1915 (No.2023 - later Corps of Hussars No.71675). He remained at the regiment's reserve at Antrim throughout the war, rising to the rank of sergeant, and acting as squadron quartermaster-sergeant.

After the war Pyper was one of a number of men recognised for his work on the home front. According to a report in the Londonderry Sentinel of 2 September 1919:

The following list of names brought to the notice of the Secretary of State for War for valuable services in the Northern District, Irish Command, was issued officially on Friday evening, but will not be gazetted. ... Sergeant (acting Squadron Quartermaster-Sergeant) T. Pyper, North Irish Horse.

After the war he resumed work for his banking firm. He died at Rathmines, Dublin, on 28 November 1944.


The image and some of the information above is sourced from Gavin Bamford's site honouring the officials of the Northern Bank and Belfast Bank who served during the two World Wars and in more recent conflicts