Alfred was employed at Lord Ellesmere’s Wharton Hall Colliery when war broke out. He was also a member of the Ellesmere Corps of the St John Ambulance, and as such was one of the first of the Little Hulton ambulance men to be mobilised. He left the village on 9th September 1914. He then went on duty at the Connaught Hospital, going onto Frensham, before entering the war in France on 1st October 1915.
He was awarded the Military Medical for gallantry in the field and good work as a stretcher-bearer, whereby he had carried wounded, day and night, under heavy shell-fire from the Germans and whilst there were serious casualties. He was awarded a bar to his medal for his work on 29th September 1918 in a wood near Cambrai, when again there were very heavy casualties and he was acting as stretcher-bearer day and night for three or four days. He was serving with the 19th Field Ambulance at this time. The following 23rd October he was wounded at a dressing station, near Le Cateau, when a shell burst near to him, and he was caught in the left cheek by a piece of shrapnel. He was evacuated to a hospital in Hastings, and was demobilized the following 19th February. He was presented with a gold watch by the St John Ambulance Brigade, Little Hulton, and the Little Hulton Nursing Division in recognition of his distinguished service.
He was the son of Mr and Mrs Charlton of 106 Longcauseway, Farnworth, and the husband of Mrs Charlton of 51 Manchester Road West, Little Hulton. [Information and photograph from the Farnworth and Worsley Journal]