Updated: Apr 10, 2021
Alfred was born on 7th May 1886, in Barrow in Furness, Cumbria, to parents David and Annie - the dockyard at Barrow was also the "birthplace" of the 1909 HMS Vanguard.
Alfred was recorded on the 1891 census aged 4 living with his parents and four older sisters at 25 St Vincent Street, Barrow in Furness - in a very industrialised town, his father worked as an upholsterer.
10 years later the family were recorded living at 27 Hindpool Road in Barrow - his father worked for himself, still as an upholsterer and Alfred, then 14, worked as a junior clerk.
Alfred's job was a miller before he signed up to the Navy for 12 years, on 7th May 1904. He began his training as a Boy 2nd Class on 12th June 1902 , noted as 5"5' tall, with dark brown hair, brown eyes, a dot tattoo on his left forearm and a scar under his left eye.
His service record follows:
HMS CALEDONIA - 12/06/1902 - 19/06/1903, rising to Boy 1st Class on 30/04/1903
HMS MINOTAUR - 20/06/1903 - 13/12/1903
HMS AGINCOURT - 14/12/1903 - 31/12/1903
HMS BOSCAWEN III - 01/01/1904 - 27/01/1904
HMS JUPITER - 28/01/1904 - 26/01/1905, rising to Ordinary Seaman on 7th May 1904, his 18th Birthday
HMS PEMBROKE - 27/01/1905 - 15/03/1905
HMS SWIFTSURE - 16/03/1905 - 07/06/1906, rising to Able Seaman on 20/04/1905
HMS PEMBROKE I - 08/06/1906 - 07/08/1906
HMS WILDFIRE - 08/08/1906 - 07/02/1907
HMS PEMBROKE - 08/02/1907 - 19/02/1907
HMS LEANDER - 20/02/1907 - 04/03/1907
HMS SAPPHIRE II - 05/03/1907 - 30/04/1907
HMS BLENHEIM - 01/05/1907 - 27/04/1908
HMS PEMBROKE I - 28/04/1908 - 18/05/1908
HMS BLENHEIM - 19/05/1908 - 16/09/1909, rising to Leading Seaman on 21/08/1909
HMS PEMBROKE I - 17/09/1909 - 07/03/1910
HMS BLENHEIM - 08/03/1910 - 15/12/1911
HMS PEMBROKE I - 16/12/1911 - 09/04/1912
HMS VANGUARD - 10/04/1912 - 24/04/1917, rising to Petty Officer on ?? Jan 1915. He also had leave to marry Jane Atkinson in Ulverston, Cumbria, in the first quarter of 1917.
HMS PEMBROKE - 25/04/1917 - 31/05/1917
HMS VANGUARD - 01/06/1917 - 09/07/1917
His Star, Victory and British medals were forwarded to his father following his death, as well as his pension. His name was recorded in remembrance on the Barrow Cenotaph.
(#71 - 752/843)
England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1837-1915 - FreeBMD
1891 and 1901 England Census
Royal Navy Registers of Seamen's Services, 1848-1939 National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Royal Navy Registers of Seamen's Services; Class: ADM 188; Piece: 388
England & Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index, 1916-2005 General Register Office; United Kingdom; Volume: 8e; Page: 1037
British Army and Navy Birth, Marriage and Death Records, 1730-1960 National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; Admiralty: Naval Casualties, Indexes, War Grave Rolls and Statistics Book, First World War.; Class: ADM 242; Piece 010 (1914 - 1919)
Royal Navy and Royal Marine War Graves Roll, 1914-1919 - TNA Series: ADM 242/10; Scan Number: 0707
Naval Medal and Award Rolls, 1793-1972 ADM 171; Piece: 117
Photo source ~ Barrow in Furness FB Group
Additional photos copyright W Sadler