Obituary: David Boyd

The death occurred in February of Comrade David Boyd, just three weeks short of his celebrating forty years as a party member. His son has provided the following obituary:


David Boyd was born in 1903 in Larne, Northern Ireland. Grandfather was a foreman at the local aluminium works and although a devout Presbyterian he supported Irish Home Rule—an unfashionable if not dangerous viewpoint. His was apparently the only copy of the Daily News to arrive each day on the ferry boat from Stranraer (the republican minority presumably taking more subversive journals). Dad remembered when the windows were tarred over and only my grandfather’s senior position in the local Masonic Lodge preventing real violence and loss of job. Amid the conflict and stupidity of the 1912 Loyalist gun-running, the War and the ‘Troubles’, Dad learned about socialism from a Scottish lodger at their home and from The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists. The Depression came early to Northern Ireland and Dad came to London. He took a variety of jobs and was sacked in about 1930 by the Co-operative Insurance Society for helping to organise a strike of fellow agents. A flirtation with the CP was followed by Orwellian disillusion and a home in the SPGB which he never left. “I thought about things’’, he told us “that’s why I am a socialist”. Dad’s ashes will rest in the local cemetery looking towards Mugsborough.