Captain Eustace King-King



Eustace King-King was born on 14 August 1880 at Florence, Italy (some records state Drinkstone, Suffolk), son of magistrate William Edward King-King and his wife, Fermanagh-born Florence Elizabeth (nee Lowry-Corry).

On 3 September 1898 King-King was commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant in the 3rd Battalion, Prince of Wales's (North Staffordshire Regiment), and on 15 November 1899 was promoted to lieutenant. On 13 October 1900 he transferred to The Queen's (Royal West Surrey Regiment), but as a 2nd lieutenant. He became a lieutenant again on 22 January 1903.

On 8 May 1909 he retired from the army and immediately took up a commission as a lieutenant in the North Irish Horse. He was promoted to captain on 2 November the following year.

On 21 August 1914 King-King embarked for France with C Squadron of the North Irish Horse, seeing action in the Retreat from Mons and Advance to the Aisne.

King-King transferred to the newly-arrived D Squadron on 19 May 1915, a move welcomed by fellow officer, C Squadron's Richard Annesley West. The two men had not got on well.

He is mentioned in a D Squadron diary entry for 14-18 June:

Two troops under Capt E. King King moved via Locon to Le Touret, bivouacking in the neighbourhood of the farm to act as prisoner's escort. These two troops were relieved on the 16th by remaining 2 troops under Major Hon A Hamilton Russell on 16-6-15.

It appears that the captain was also unpopular with the officers of D Squadron. On 30 June 1915 he left for base to attend a medical board, suffering from 'debility'. Fellow officer Lancelot Wise wrote:

Our Capt. has gone thank heavens! Doctor did it for us!!! We had a fizz supper the day he left!!

King-King returned to the regiment's reserve depot at Antrim on sick leave, remaining there until 6 April 1918, when he was seconded as commandant of a prisoner of war company. He relinquished his commission on 22 August that year on account of ill-health.

After the war King-King retired to his family estate, Staunton Park, at Staunton-on-Arrow, Leominster, Herefordshire

He died on 7 January 1975.



The first image, showing King-King in review order about 1910, is from a collection by author R.J. Smith. The image of the medals, King-King's 1914 Star with clasp, 1914-18 Service Medal and Victory Medal, were kindly provided by William Gordon.

Another image of King-King can be found here.