Arthur was educated at Spring Hill School, Southampton, and at Edinburgh University, qualifying M.B., C.M. in 1885. On 28th July 1886 he was serving with the R.A.M.C. at the rank of Captain. He gained a diploma in public health [D.P.H.] in 1892, and gained promotion to the rank of Major on 28th July 1898. From 1903 to 1904 he served in Tibet, then gained further promotion to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel on 28th July 1906. From 1910 to 1913 he was an instructor at the R.A.M.C. School of Instruction. On 3rd January 1914 he retired with pay.
On the outbreak of war he was recalled to the Active List. He was appointed Assistant Director of Medical Services [A.D.M.S.] (Sanitation) on 31st July 1915 to the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force during Operations on the Gallipoli Peninsula. In 1916 he went to Egypt, then in April 1916 he was appointed A.D.M.S. for sanitation in Salonika, during which time he designed a mosquito net for use in tents.
On 28/12/1917 he was appointed Companion Order of St Michael and St George. Also in 1917 he was awarded the Medalle d’Or des Epidemies. In 1918 he was appointed Companion Order of Bath, and Order of Redeemer (Greece), 3rd Class Commander.