Thomas, or Tom for short, was the third child of Arthur and Alice Mawby who, originally from Bristol, now found themselves living in Summerhill Street near to the Jewellery Quarter. Alice was a hardworking Victorian mother who strived so that her children would have the best possible start in life.

However, that was all set to change with the outbreak of the First World War. Both of her sons joined up – Arthur, the eldest son, joined the Royal Engineers. Thomas himself joined the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. Although Thomas was only 14 years old at this time, it was common for young boys to lie about their age in order to serve, with many of the recruiting officers, who were paid for each person who joined up, happy to ignore what their eyes told them.

One can only imagine the pain and heartache felt by their mother as her two precious young sons were now off to war.

 By 1916 Thomas had joined the Worcestershire Regiment, and what unimaginable horrors he saw and endured at the Western Front at such a young age we will never know. What we do know sadly is that he died of an infection, possibly Spanish flu in Dover in 1919, he was only 19 years old.

The affect this would have had on his family would have been devastating. Thomas was a much-loved Son and brother. Arthur who survived the war named his son who was born in 1926 Thomas after his younger brother.

Private Thomas (Tom) Mawby is buried in an unmarked grave in Warstone Lane Cemetery (Section J, Vault 3), although his name is featured on the war memorial there.

Unburied Treasures Audio Tour – The Mawby Family (written and performed by Jasmine Belle)

Jewellery Quarter Cemeteries Project


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