Rev Thomas Henley Flynn

Tom Flynn was born in Falmouth on 11 Jan 1889 the son of Rev Canon John Stephen Flynn. He attended Harrow School and Corpus Christi College, Oxford, matriculating in 1908. He was a life long friend of Noel Downing who was a contemporary of him at both Harrow and Oxford. 

Tom Flynn is mentioned in some of Noel’s correspondence. Both saw active service in the First World War. Tom appears to have been in a Territorial Unit before the outbreak of hostilities and, as such, was sent to India in late 1914 to relieve front line troops needed in France.  Noel mentions he received a letter from Tom, then in India, in Jun 1915. He was in the Royal Field Artillery and according to his service records also saw service both in France and Mesopotamia, rising to the rank of Major.

He was ordained as a priest in about 1922 but seems to have spent his career as a school teacher first in Brighton and then in Bournemouth. He was appointed headmaster of the Old Ride School in 1930 and although the school moved twice he stayed in post for 32 years until his death.

Tom Flynn and family, c. 1930

Tom Flynn and family, c. 1930

He and his wife Enid are recorded as staying with the Downings in Upton, Hampshire in 1954.

In the Upton address book it records “Old Ride, Western Road, near Bournemouth” for T. H Flynn (The Rev!). The exclamation mark is clearly open to a number of interpretations.

He died on 14 May 1962.


  • Harrow School Register, 1800-1911, 3rd Edition, Longmans, Green and Co. London 1911
  • Oxford University, Roll of Service, Clarendon Press 1920
  • London Gazette, Issue 28606, page 3372 – 3 Apr 1912 – appointed 2nd Lieutenant in Home Counties Brigade, Royal Field Artillery
Last updated on 7 February 2020 by JJ Morgan