Encyclopedia Titanica

Thomas Dyer Edwardes

Mr Thomas Dyer Edwardes was born on 21st February 1847 the son of Thomas Edwardes. He was educated at Rugby School and Clare College Cambridge.

After conducting business in Australia for about 10 years he returned to England and on 10 January 1878 was married to Clementina Villiers; a daughter Lucy Noel Martha was born in December of the same year.  In 1888 they purchased Prinknash Park in Gloucestershire as their country home.

He boarded the Titanic at Southampton with a party that included his wife Clementina and their daughter Noël, the Countess of Rothes.

The Dyer-Edwardes disembarked at Cherbourg, while Lucy continued to New York.  Thomas would later mark the rescue of his only daughter by purchasing a lifeboat for the town of Fraserburgh, Scotland. The lifeboat was named Lady Rothes.

In 1889 he became a Justice of the Peace and in 1895 was appointed High Sheriff of Gloucestershire.

Thomas was closely associated with the church and in 1892 became patron of Cranham benefice; over a 16 month period he oversaw the restoration of the crumbling parish church; in 1915 endowed the church with a new altar-screen.

Later in life he converted to catholicism and it was his wish that Prinknash be given to the order of Benedictine monks who still occupy the estate.

In January 1926 he attended a private audience with Pope Pius XI at the Vatican.  A few weeks later, on 10 February, he died suddenly from Heart Failure while at Naples. His funeral took place at Prinknash Park Private Chapel and he was interred in the chancel there1. He left an estate valued at £165,848


  1. He is buried under the floorboards in the chapel; the chapel was refurbished some years ago and is grave is now covered over.

Titanic Passenger Summary

Name: Mr Thomas Dyer Edwardes
Age: 65 years 1 month and 21 days (Male)
Nationality: English
Marital Status: Married to Clementina Villiers
Last Residence: in
Embarked: Southampton on Wednesday 10th April 1912
Ticket No. 87, £3
Disembarked: Cherbourg
Cause of Death:
Buried: Prinknash Abbey, Gloucestershire, England

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References and Sources

Morning Post, 11 January 1878, Marriages
Western Daily Press, 12 February 1926, Former High Sheriff of Gloucestershire Dead
Dundee Courier, 11 August 1915, Fraserburgh Lifeboat Lady Rothes Does Good Service
Gloucester Journal, 17 April 1915, New Altar Reredos at Cranham
Gloucester Citizen, 20 January 1926, The Pope and Mr Dyer Edwardes
Gloucester Journal, 13 February 1926, Fatal Illness at Naples
Cheltenham Chronicle, 13 March 1926, Funeral at Prinknash Park
Gloucestershire Echo, 27 December 1926, Wills
Gloucester Citizen, 14 February 1928, The Late Mr. T. Dyer Edwardes

History of Prinknash Abbey
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Comment and discuss

  1. Jeffrey M. Kern

    Jeffrey M. Kern said:

    I discovered a website containing information regarding the Countess of Rothes' parents, Thomas Dyer-Edwardes, Jr., and Clementina Georgina Lucy Drummond Villiers. The information is accurate, but I question one part of it. It states that Thomas and Clementina Dyer-Edwardes were cross-channel passengers, purchasing ticket No. 87 for £3 (On this website, the holders of cross-channel ticket No. 87 were a Mr. and Mrs. Ewards). They were going to their chateau of Caudebec-en-Caux, Normandy, and were accompanying their daughter, Noël, who traveled with her husband's cousin, Gladys Cherry, and... Read full post

  2. Eric S. Silvia

    Eric S. Silvia said:

    Hi Jeff, The link you supplied does not work, could you double check the address. -Eric-

  3. Jeffrey M. Kern

    Jeffrey M. Kern said:

    Sorry, Eric. I checked it myself, but it did not go through. Just try going through , and look up "Noel Dyer-Edwardes," and you should find the website address within the first five websites listed.

  4. Lester Mitcham

    Lester Mitcham said:

    Hi Jeffrey, Very interesting item. Given the large number of name errors I do not find it at all surprising that the names of Mr and Mrs Thomas Dyer-Edwardess were mis-recorded as Mr Mrs T.D. Ewards. - The Countess' maid was recorded as Miss R. Mairore.

  5. Dave Gittins

    Dave Gittins said:

    I didn't find the site mentioned but I found this very informative site, complete with a splendid painting of the Countess. It's easily the best picture of her that I've seen.

  6. Lester Mitcham

    Lester Mitcham said:

    Hi Dave, It comes up as the 3rd item on under "Noel Dyer-Edwardes," on Titanic People. File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML ... Middlesex, on February 21 st 1847, the only son of Thomas Dyer Edwardes, and his wife ... The couple had one daughter, Lucy-Noel Martha, born on Christmas Day 1878. ... If you cannot get it to open e-mail me and I will try and post you the link. Regards, Lester

  7. Tony Sheils

    Tony Sheils said:

    I was unaware until this posting of the Titanic connection with Prinknash Abbey at Cranham in Gloucestershire. Prinknash was donated by the Dyer Edwards family in 1928 to monks. The well-known monastery was created in lovely grounds. Further information is available on the website , particularly its history. Tony

  8. Craig Stringer

    Craig Stringer said:

    Dear Jeffrey, I think I can help, since I wrote the article you found. Thomas and Clementina did indeed travel to Cherbourg on the Titanic. Their crossing was mentioned in several British newspapers at the time. The website you found is an advertisement for a project of mine that came out in April. I was invited to write a set of biographies about the people who sailed on the Titanic. This has been produced on a CD Rom, which is available from the site you found. In addition to Thomas and Clementina, there are biographies on a number of cross-channel passengers, including the... Read full post

  9. Randy Bryan Bigham

    Randy Bryan Bigham said:

    Hi Craig, Congratulations on your project. Thanks too for sharing your research, particularly the ADB article on the Dyer-Edwardes which was a revelation to almost everyone. Best to you, Randy

  10. Jeffrey M. Kern

    Jeffrey M. Kern said:

    Craig, Thank you for your response. I enjoyed the information presented on your website about the Dyer-Edwardes. Jeff K.

  11. Renae Barrett Salisbury

    Renae Barrett Salisbury said:

    One of my students wants to know how many people boarded at Cherbourg and how many boarded at Queenstown.

  12. Lester Mitcham

    Lester Mitcham said:

    Hi Renae, Sorry but to the best of my understanding there is no definite answer. Most sources disagree as to which First Class passengers boarded at Southampton and which at Cherbourg. Starting with what is not is dispute: 3 First Class; 7 Second Class and 113 Third Class passengers boarded at Queenstown. 102 Third Class passengers boarded at Cherbourg; with 27 Second Class; one of whom upgraded to First Class. I am not even going to try and give you a First Class number. What figures does your student have for Southampton?

  13. Renae Barrett Salisbury

    Renae Barrett Salisbury said:

    Thank you for your help! My student is still compiling his Southhampton figures. I'll let you know what he comes up with. He was impressed to receive such a quick response from ET message board. We both appreciate your input. R.

  14. Lester Mitcham

    Lester Mitcham said:

    Hi Renae, I look forward to seeing the result. What records/documents/informations is your student using to compile the Southampton figure?

  15. Vitezslav Ivicic

    Vitezslav Ivicic said:

    In one topic,* I have read that Countess' parents were going on the Titanic to their chateau at Cadebec-En-Caux in Normandy. I have tried to search that chateau but I have not found anything. Does anybody have any infos about the chateau? Thank you very much Regards, Vitezslav

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Trevor Baxter, UK