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Gilroy was an artist and illustrator, born in Whitley Bay, the son of the painter John William Gilroy whose work is also included in the Collection. He attended Armstrong College (now part of Newcastle University) until his studies were interrupted by the First World War, in which he served with the Royal Field Artillery. After the war, he gained a scholarship to the Royal College of Art, achieving his diploma in 1920. He exhibited his paintings widely, and was a noted portrait painter, being a particular favourite of the Royal Family.
The location of this painting is the South African War Memorial at the Haymarket in Newcastle, with the Grand Hotel on the left of the picture. It is possible that the occasion is the Victory Celebrations Peace March of July 1919, with the Tyneside Scottish Regiment and Tyneside Irish Regiment represented. The figure third from the left is Sir Thomas Oliver, who was a distinguished physician and instrumental in forming the Tyneside Scottish Regiment. The dog is likely to be Hughie, the Irish wolfhound mascot of the Tyneside Irish Regiment.
oil on canvas
H 126.5 x W 101 cm