Harold Thomas Cawley

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Harold Thomas Cawley MP, circa 1910
Photograph of Harold Thomas Cawley, of the Bury and District Soldiers' Memorial Book, Section 1914-1915, published by the Bury Times

Captain Harold Thomas Cawley (12 June 1878 – 23 September 1915)[1] was a British barrister, Liberal Party politician and soldier.


Born at Crumpsall, he was the second son of Frederick Cawley, 1st Baron Cawley and his wife Elizabeth Smith, daughter of John Smith.[2] His younger brother was Oswald Cawley.[2] Cawley was educated at Rugby School and then at New College, Oxford, where he graduated with a Master of Arts.[3] He was called to the Bar by the Inner Temple in 1902 and went to the Northern Circuit, working in Lancashire.[3] Two years later he joined the 2nd Volunteer Battalion, Manchester Regiment.[4]


In 1910, Cawley entered the British House of Commons for Heywood,[1] and a year later he was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Home Secretary Reginald McKenna.[2] In 1914 he became aide de camp to Major-General William Douglas, the officer commanding 42nd (East Lancashire) Division.[4]


In the First World War, Cawley fought in the Battle of Gallipoli where he was killed in action.[5] Before his death, he sent a letter to his father, at that time representative of Prestwich in the Parliament of the United Kingdom.[4] As a Member of Parliament the letter was not subject to military censorship, and it reported the mishandling of the Dardanelles campaign in some detail.[4]

It was in memory of Harold and two other sons - Oswald and John - who died in the war that their father endowed a ward at Ancoats Hospital, Manchester, in 1919 at a cost of £10,000.[6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Leigh Rayment - British House of Commons". Retrieved 24 June 2009.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "ThePeerage - Captain Harold Thomas Cawley". Retrieved 12 December 2006.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 Who is Who 1914. London: Adam & Charles Black Ltd. 1914. p. 363.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives - Cawley, Harold Thomas". Retrieved 24 June 2009.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Debrett, John (1918). Arthur G. M. Hesilrige (ed.). Debrett's House of Commons and Judicial Bench. London: Dean & Son. pp. XXIV.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Brockbank, E. M., ed. (1929). The Book of Manchester and Salford Written for the 97th Annual Meeting of the British Medical Association. Manchester: George Falkner. pp. 126–27.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Sir Edward Hopkinson Holden
Member of Parliament for Heywood
January 1910 – 1915
Succeeded by
Albert Holden Illingworth