Tom Eayrs was the son of a St Neots farmer and butcher, with a butchers shop on the Market Square. Born in 1897, he enlisted just after his eighteenth birthday in 1915 and by October he was fighting on the Western Front at Cloth Hall, Ypres. He continued fighting on the Western Front for the rest of the war, being injured on at least one occasion, until in October 1918, only weeks before the end of the war, he received a serious ‘blighty wound’. This was an injury serious enough to need nursing in England, nicknamed ‘Blighty’ by soldiers a mix of Britain / England. Tom Eayrs survived the Great War and lived in the St Neots area for the rest of his life.
St Neots soldier, Tom Eayrs after he became an officer, 1917
Eayrs butcher shop on St Neots Market Square, about 1914
Eayrs Butcher’s shop, St Neots Market Square
Tom Eayrs in hospital in Oxford, 1919
Tom Eayrs convalescing in Brighton, 1919
The ruins of Ypres, from a small souvenir album sent home by Tom Eayrs