Distinguished Service Order Gazetted 27 Sep 1901.
Military O.B.E. Gazetted 3 June 1919.
M.I.D. Gazetted 19 Sep 1901.
Henry Read Darley was born in Dublin on 13 June 1865, the son of the late Joseph F. Darley, Barrister of 5 Northbroook Road, Leeson Park, Dublin. Educated at Clifton College and Trinity College, Cambridge, Darley became fluent in French and German and commissioned 2nd Lieutenant of the 4th Dragoon Guards on 14 Mar 1888, promoted to Lieutenant on 30 July 1889, Captain on 13 Apr 1892 and Adjutant on 15 Apr 1891. Marrying Emily Henrietta, daughter of the Honourable John Prendergast Vereker, Darley was called to the Bar Inner Temple on 17 Nov 1893, appointed Captain of the 3rd (Volunteer) Battalion, South Wales Borderers on 14 Feb 1894 and posted to South Africa, serving as Aide-de-Camp to G.O.C. Imperial Yeomanry Brigade, D.A.A.G. from 15 Dec 1900 and A.D.C. to the Inspector General of the Imperial Yeomanry, Major General Lord C.C.W. Chesham. Involved in the operations in Orange Free State to May 1900, operations in the Transvaal in May and June 1900 and operations in west Pretoria in 1900, including the actions at Venterskroom from 7-9 Aug, operations in the Orange River Colony from May to Nov 1900, including the action at Lindley from 1 June at Rhenoster River, and finally operations in Cape Colony north of Orange River and Transvaal from 30 Nov 1900 to Jan 1902.
Resigning his commission in the South Wales Borderers on 6 June 1904, Darley was then employed as Secretary of the Cavalry Club, London. Volunteering his services at the outbreak of war, he was appointed to the Major Reserve of Officers, 4th Dragoon Guards on 29 Aug 1914 and appointed A.D.C. Assistant Military Secretary to G.O.C. Eastern Command on 7 June 1915 and was then posted to France on 27 May 1916. Appointed Staff Captain with the rank of Major 21 Nov 1916 and Assistant Provost Marshall 11th Division, Darley was awarded O.B.E. (Military Division) "for valuable services rendered in connection with the war."
Demobilised in the same year, Darley returned to his employment as Secretary of the Cavalry Club in Mayfair, London and died on 25 Apr 1931, aged 65. His brother, Captain Joseph Watkins William Darley, was serving with the 4th Dragoon Guards in Egypt, entitled to the Egypt Medal with three clasps, Tel-el-Kebir, The Nile 1884-85 & Abu Klea and Khedives Star 1882. He was Killed In Action at the Battle of Abu Klea on 17 Jan 1885. His diary records his departure from camp at Brighton on 22 Sept 1884, embarkation on the S.S. Deccan from Portsmouth on 26 Sep 1884, the passage to Egypyt via Alexandria and Cairo pyramids, with regimental details until Darley's final entry dated just 3 days before the fateful battle.
Henry Read Darley's son, Desmond John Darley, was born in Westminster on 31 Jan 1895 and educated at Eton and King's College, Cambridge where he was a Classical Exhibitioner in residence Michaelmas Term 1914, obtaining a commission in Apr 1915 and serving with the 11th (Service) Battalion (Cambridgeshire), Suffolk Regiment, Darley was Killed In Action at La Boiselle on the first day of The Somme Offensive, commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial.