Character: Thomas Barrow
(played by Rob James-Collier)
Thomas Barrow is first footman at Downton Abbey. An unpleasant character who is always willing to undermine and lie about others for his own advancement, he is a petty thief and blackmailer who uses his homosexual affairs as part of his intrigues. He tries to escape active military service by becoming a non-combatant medic, and when he goes to the front line deliberately gets wounded to be sent home. He shows a nobler side in his friendship with a wounded officer but soon reverts to type, losing his savings in the black market and continuing his schemes to be appointed as the Earl’s valet. In series three he is almost disgraced for homosexual behaviour, but in a dramatic turnaround eventually is promoted to underbutler.