Sir Thomas Drew, architect, born at Victoria Place, Belfast, on 18 September 1838, came from a well-known Limerick family. The basis of Drew's independent practice was ecclesiastical work. His most important ecclesiastical work was St Anne's Cathedral in Belfast, in a Romanesque style, which was started to his designs in 1899 but completed by others following his death.
He was also responsible for the restoration of Waterford Church of Ireland Cathedral and consulting architect to a number of other Church of Ireland cathedrals. Among the other chief buildings designed by Drew were several in Dublin, including Rathmines town hall (1890–94), the Ulster Bank in College Green (1888–91), and the graduates' tercentenary memorial building at Trinity College (1899–1902). He was also the only Irish architect to be invited to submit a design for the Queen Victoria memorial in London in 1901.
In 1901, on the death of Sir Thomas Farrell, the sculptor, Drew was knighted by the lord lieutenant of Ireland, Earl Cadogan. In 1905 Dublin University conferred on him the honorary degree of LLD, and in 1910 he was asked by the National University of Ireland to fill the newly established chair of architecture at University College, Dublin. Drew died in hospital in Lower Mount Street, Dublin, on 13 March 1910 and was buried in Dean's Grange cemetery, county Dublin.