Private Robert John Warnock



Robert John (Jack) Warnock was born on 22 May 1895 at Enagh, County Armagh, the third of seven children of power loom tenter Robert Samuel Warnock and his wife Annie (nee Johnston). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at 19 Finvoy Street, Belfast, with his parents and five surviving siblings.

Warnock enlisted in the North Irish Horse on 4 November 1915 (No.1785). He embarked for France in 1916 or the first half of 1917, where he was posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st or 2nd North Irish Horse Regiments.

In September 1917 the 2nd North Irish Horse Regiment was disbanded and most of its men, together with some surplus to the needs of the 1st NIH Regiment, were transferred to the 9th (Service) Battalion, Royal Irish Fusiliers – renamed the 9th (North Irish Horse) Battalion. Like most of the men, Warnock was transferred on 20 September. He was issued a new regimental number – 41321. He may have seen action with the battalion at the Battle of Cambrai in November and December 1917.

Around this time Warnock fell ill and was evacuated to the UK for treatment. On 29 May 1918 he was discharged, being no longer physically fit for war service (paragraph 392 xvi, King's Regulations) – documents suggest the reason being 'valvular disease of the heart'.

After his discharge Warnock returned to Finvoy Street and found work as a machinist. On 19 June 1919 he married Martha Elizabeth Morton at St Anne's Church of Ireland Parish Church in Belfast.

Warnock died on 1 May 1962 and was buried in the Roselawn Cemetery, Belfast.



Jack Warnock on his horse Topsy.


The image above shows H Squadron (probably) at Antrim in 1916. Warnock is in the second row, second from the viewers left.



Images 1-4 kindly provided by Bracken Anderson. Image 5 sourced from the Billion Graves website.