VC holder honoured in special service

Members of the The King's Own Scottish Borderers Association at the graveside of the Piper of Loos.
Members of the The King's Own Scottish Borderers Association at the graveside of the Piper of Loos.

A special service has been held to commemorate the death of Daniel Laidlaw, the only Victoria Cross holder buried in Northumberland.

The King’s Own Scottish Borderers Association held a service at the grave of Piper Daniel Laidlaw at St Cuthbert’s Church, Norham.

Daniel Laidlaw VC

Daniel Laidlaw VC

This year is the 100th anniversary of Laidlaw, known as the Piper of Loos, receiving the VC.

Born in 1875, he was educated at the Church of England School in Lesbury and became a miller’s apprentice at Lesbury mill.

He joined the Army at 21 and served in the Durham Light Infantry in India.

He then served in the King’s Own Scottish Borderers as a piper until 1912 and re-enlisted when the First World War broke out.

He went to France with the regiment in June, 1915.

He was awarded the VC following his bravery during an attack on the German trenches.

He ran forward with the charging troops, playing the pipes as he went.

Despite being wounded in the ankle and leg, he kept going, piping and hobbling along as best he could.

Laidlaw had married Georgina Mary at Alnwick Baptist Church in 1906 and they had six children.

He worked around north Northumberland at different stages of his life, including at Alnwick’s Co-operative store and in South Doddington with a firm of horse breeders.

He was an assistant Scout master and also worked as a postmaster, near Norham.

Laidlaw died in 1950, aged 74.