Laois World War I hero to be honoured in Rathdowney and Durrow

Leinster Express Reporter


Leinster Express Reporter


World War I hero who won Victoria Cross  in British Army to be honoured  in Laois

John (Jack) Moyney was born in Laois town in 1895.

A World War I hero from Laois  who won the Victoria Cross for bravery is to be celebrated and commemorated in his native Rathdowney. 

John (Jack) Moyney (sometimes spelled "Miney") was born in south Laois town in 1895. In Sptember 1917, when he was 22 years old, and a lance-sergeant in the 2nd Battalion, Irish Guards, British Army during the First World War, he participated in an action near Broenbeck in Belgium, part of the Battle of Ypres.

Lance-Sergeant Moyney was in command of 15 men forming two advanced posts. Surrounded by the enemy he held his post for 96 hours, having no water and very little food. He led his men to safety across a stream, and was awarded the Victoria Cross, the highest award for bravery in the British Army.

Moyney survived the War, and went on to be a prominent member of the community in Roscrea, Co Tipperary, where he died on 10 November 1980. His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Guards Regimental Headquarters (Irish Guards RHQ), Wellington Barracks, London.


Laois Heritage Office is working with the Royal British Legion in Ireland and the Irish Guards, on the preparation of a suitable commemoration to Sgt Moyney, which will be unveiled in his home town of Rathdowney, on Tuesday 12th September starting at 2pm. All are welcome to attend.

An event during Heritage Week will also commemorate Sgt Moyney, when a reenactment of the action for which he won his Victoria Cross will take place at the River Erkina besind Bob's Bar in Durrow, on Sunday 20th August, from 5pm. A snug in the famous Laois bar is named in his honour.

Booking is essential for this event, and tickets are available from Eventbrite