Captain Thomas St Pierre Bunbury died, aged 23, in an air battle on 31st August 1918 whilst serving with the 64th Squadron Royal Air Force. He was the elder of the two children of Captain (later Major-General) William Edwin Bunbury (1858-1925) and Eva Mary (née Gale) who had married in Bengal in 1893.
Thomas St Pierre Bunbury was born in India on 11th September 1894 where his father was serving with the Indian Army. His father joined the 2nd Queen’s Regiment, British Army, in 1878, being transferred to the Indian Staff Corps as a Lieutenant in 1881 and promoted Captain in 1889. He served in the Afghan War in 1880 and remained in India until at least 1918, retiring to Chope Barton, Northam, Devon where he died in 1925.
Whilst he served in the Indian Army, his children were both educated at boarding school in England. Thomas St Pierre Bunbury attended Packwood Haugh School in the Solihull Rural District 1903-1908 before going onto Clifton College. The 1911 census shows both boys as boarders at the college.
The Packwood Haugh School website indicates that Thomas left Clifton in 1912 to go to the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, subsequently joining the Royal Field Artillery before transferring to the RAF.
Thomas’s younger brother, George Francis Bunbury (1895-1977) also served in the Army and was wounded in 1915. He was a career officer, and rose to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel, serving in India during the Second World War.
Captain Thomas St Pierre Bunbury is buried in the Vis-en-Artois British Cemetery. He is also commemorated on Packwood Haugh memorial, and on his parents’ gravestone at Northam, Devon.
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