John Morrow Simms (1854 - 1934):
Cleric, Presbyterian and politician
John Simms was born in Newtownards, County Down, and was educated at Queen's College, Belfast, and in Edinburgh, where he studied theology, afterwards becoming a Presbyterian minister. In 1887 he was appointed an army chaplain and served in the Sudan and in South Africa. In the First World War he was principal chaplain to the British forces in France, with the rank of major-general. He was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George and a Companion of the Order of the Bath. In 1919 he became Moderator of the General Assembly, and in 1922 member of the Westminster parliament for North Down, retaining his parliamentary seat until 1931. He was the King's Honorary Chaplain. He died in Newtownards. In his obituary The Times said of him: 'He was no mere arm-chair minister, but shared the risks and hardships of military life'.