Thomas John Richardson was born in Flint on 17th December, 1891 and was baptised on 17th January, 1892 at St Mary’s Catholic Church. He was the fifth of five children to Thomas Richardson and Mary Elizabeth (Barloni).
Thomas Sr was born in Holywell and Mary in Denbigh and they were married locally in 1870. The lived at 22, Mumforth Street and Thomas Sr was a tinplate worker.
Their first child, Robert Thomas, was a sailor who drowned off Dundalk, Ireland in 1892 aged 21.
Some years later they moved to 69, Sydney Street and eventually settling at 73, Sydney Street.
Thomas Sr subsequently became a self employed tinsmith and plumber but died after a short illness on 15th November, 1913 and was buried in the Northop Road Cemetery.
Funeral: On Monday afternoon the funeral of the late Mr Thomas Richardson, tinsmith, Sydney Street, took place. Deceased was 64 years of age, and was of a family the male members of which were tinsmiths. The deceased being a Roman Catholic, the remains were interred in the Cemetery with the solemnity of the Catholic ritual. The service was conducted by the Rev Canon Jennings. The chief mourners were the widow, Mr Peter Richardson and Mr Thomas Richardson (sons), Mrs Hampson, and Mrs Arnold, Canonbury, London (daughters), and Mr A Richardson, Northwich and others. The deceased having been a member of the Loyal Flint Castle Lodge of Oddfellows, there were representatives of that Lodge paying their last tributes of respect to their departed brother.
In the 1911 census Thomas John was a boarder at the home of his sister Gertrude and her Police Officer husband Frederick Arnold at 4, Lincoln House, Asteys Row, Islington, London. Thomas was employed as a junior clerk with a timber merchant.
He enlisted in the Army at St Paul’s London with the 1st Reserve Cavalry, No 8888, then at some point was transferred to the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry who were posted to France on 27th July, 1915.
In September, 1915 he wrote a letter to his mother, and his married sister, informing them that he was quite well and that he had seen much of the fighting against the Germans at the French front.
On 19th January, 1917 the County Herald published the following.
NEWS OF A FLINT SOLDIER WANTED
We are informed that information is required by his mother and relatives in Flint of Private T J Richardson, and whose mother resides at 73, Sydney Street, Flint. It is now a number of weeks since any communication has been received from him; and though some enquiries have been instituted nothing has been forthcoming to throw any light on his whereabouts at the present time. It is surmised that he is missing through some cause.
Then on 4th January, 1918 this story was published.
ANOTHER FLINT HERO’S DEATH MISSING SINCE 1916: NOW REPORTED DEAD
At the latter end of 1916 we reported that Lance-Corporal T J Richardson, of 73, Sydney Street, Flint, and son of the late Mr T Richardson, and Mrs Richardson, of that address, was included amongst the missing local soldiers. We are now informed that his mother has now received the official intimation that the Lance-Corporal, who was her youngest son, had been killed. He had been missing since 18th November, 1916, and every hope was entertained that he was a prisoner of war. He was only 24 years of age, and joined up at the commencement of the war. He was well respected by the members of the regiment to which he belonged, and just before his lamented death his Sergeant-Major wrote to his sister, Mrs Arnold, who resides in London, commending him as an excellent soldier, and hoping soon to see his further promotion in the Army. But, unfortunately, he paid the price of all heroes for his country. He was well known in the Borough of Flint, and prior to his enlistment had been employed in a neighbouring works. We feel that the sympathies of the public of Flint will be extended the bereaved mother, and his relatives, in the sad news.