Rupert Penry-Jones

Rupert Penry-Jones

Is there Indian blood in the family?

Nick Thorne, Writer at TheGenealogist

Nick Thorne

Writer at TheGenealogist


Husband and Wife Rupert Penry-Jones and Dervla Kirwan have both taken part in ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ We have previously discovered Dervla’s story and this time we focus on Rupert’s ancestry which includes visits to Italy and India.

Rupert was born in London on the 22nd September 1970 to actor Peter Penry-Jones and his wife Angela Thorne, also an actress. Rupert, best known for his part in the BBC series ‘Spooks’, and his younger brother Laurence have both followed in their parents footsteps and taken up acting careers.

It seems there could be truth in the family belief of ‘Indian Blood in the family’ as Rupert’s mother was born in Karachi, India in 1939 to Bill (William Herbert Alfred) Thorne and his wife Sylvia. Bill was born in 1913 and is descended from generations of the Thorne family living in India. He qualified in medicine in 1937 from St Thomas’s Hospital. He went on to work at Margate & District General Hospital and later joined the Indian Medical Service in which he served during WW2, during the Italian Campaign of Monte Cassino, also known as the Battle for Rome.

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Marriage index - entry for Peter Jones & Angela Thorne
Marriage index - entry for Peter Jones & Angela Thorne
Death index - entry for William Herbert Alfred Thorne
Death index - entry for William Herbert Alfred Thorne

The new Diamond subscription on TheGenealogist.co.ukincludes overseas records for India, America, Australia and South Africa. Records for India include the Indian Army and Civil Service List 1865, and the 1805 East India Register and Directory.

Bill returned to England in 1971 and passed away in 1983 leaving behind his second wife Margaret Clare.

View Rupert’s Family Tree in TreeView, the free online family tree builder.

On Rupert’s paternal side, his grandfather David Penry Jones was a Welsh Non-Conformist minister and was known by the name of Penry. Peter incorporated his father’s middle name into his surname when he entered the acting profession, making the double barreled surname Penry-Jones.

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