Major Walter Waring (1876 – 1930)

Major Walter Waring

Major Walter Waring

Walter Waring began his military career with the 1st Life Guards and saw service during the South African Boer War. He followed his father into Parliament, serving as a Liberal MP for the constituencies of Banffshire, Blaydon and then Berwick and Haddington before switching parties to sit as a Conservative on London County Council. He maintained his military links by obtaining a commission in the Yeomanry and by 1914 he was major in command of A Squadron, the Lothians and Border Horse. A Squadron drew its men from East Lothian and Berwickshire.

Like many other MPs, Waring left Parliament to serve with his regiment. He went overseas with the reorganised A Squadron to France and then on through the Mediterranean as part of the British Salonika Force. The detached unit acted as divisional cavalry for the newly raised 26th Division but the nature of the war as it evolved in the Balkans Theatre meant that divisional cavalry were operationally redundant for much of the time. The solution was to reorganise the mounted components from several divisions as Mounted Brigades and then later as Corps Cavalry Regiments. Waring guided his Squadron through these changes, being sometimes in command of the composite regiment created from several squadrons, before being posted to a Headquarters Intelligence position, in which he finished the war.

While Waring was on active service, his wife converted their home into Lennell Auxiliary Hospital for Officers, of which she became administrator.

Post-war Waring resumed his political career, but found himself out of step with his former party. He died in 1930.

Waring’s connection with East Lothian is well documented in the pages of the Haddingtonshire Courier, held on microfilm at the John Gray Centre.

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