King Edward’s School and the Great War

Memorial Roll of Honour 1914 - 1918


Tabberner, Thomas Kemp

Lieutenant ▪ Egyptian Expeditionary Force

Thomas Kemp Tabberner, born on 10th April 1880, was admitted to King Edward’s School in September 1891. He lived with his father, Thomas, who was a druggist at that time, his mother, Louisa, and his younger sister, Dora, at Ashted Row.

As a pupil of the Modern School, Thomas studied a primarily scientific, rather than classical, curriculum. Although his class rankings in general work and French were not high, his strength in science placed him 5th in his class for the subject. After leaving School, Thomas worked in the family drysalting business, dealing with a range of chemical products including glue, varnish, dye and colourings.

In September 1914, Thomas joined the Army as a Private Soldier with the 14th Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, along with many local Old Edwardians. He was gazetted as a Second Lieutenant on 1st September 1915 with the 2nd Battalion, London Rifles, Territorial Force, and was promoted to Lieutenant the following September. He married Jane Lumley at St. George’s Church, Edgbaston, on 9th October 1915, and their son, Philip St. Vaast, was born on 30th August 1916. Thomas served with the London Rifles in France and Flanders from June 1916 onwards. After seeing much fighting there, he was sent to Salonika in November that year. He was then posted to Palestine, serving with the Egyptian Expeditionary Force from May 1917. Later that year, Thomas was killed in action at the taking of Jerusalem on 8th December, aged thirty-one. He was buried at the Jerusalem War Cemetery, and is commemorated on St. Augustine’s Church War Memorial, Edgbaston. He left his estate of £194 to his wife.