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Alfred Hulme was born in Horwich in 1895 and was the son of William James Hulme (b.1867), a rail fitter’s labourer and sometime baker’s van man and Florence Gertrude Louise Hulme (née Baxter b.1869).

Alfred first appeared on the 1901 Census living at 23 Dickinson Street, Horwich with his parents and siblings Thomas (b.1893), Isabella (b.1888) Catherine (b.1900) and Florence (b.1901).

By 1911 he was living at 69 Mary Street West with his parents and siblings Thomas, Isabella, Catherine, Florence, Ellen (b.1903) and Ada (b.1906). Alfred was then working as a dodger in a bleach works.

When war broke out in 1914 Alfred enlisted in Kitchener’s Army at Horwich and joined the 6th (Service) Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment with the number 11846.

After a period of training in the UK he sailed for Gallipoli from Avonmouth aboard HMT Braemar Castle on 15th June 1915 and shortly after arriving was posted as ‘missing’ after the action at Chunuk Bair on the 9th August 1915.

The official despatch about the action states;

“The two battalions of the New Army chosen to hold Chunuk Bair were the 6th Loyal North Lancashire Regiment. The first of these arrived in good time and occupied the trenches. Even in the darkness their commanding officer, Lieut-Colonel H.G. Levinge, recognized how dangerously these trenches were sited, and he began at once to dig observation posts on the actual crest and to strengthen the defences where he could; but he had not time given him to do much.

The second battalion, the Wiltshires, were delayed by the intricate country; they did not reach the edge of the entrenchment until 4am, and were then told to lie down in what was believed, erroneously, to be a covered position. At daybreak on Tuesday 10th August, the Turks delivered a grand attack from the Chunuk Bair Hill-Q against these two battalions, already weakened in numbers, though not in spirit, by previous fighting.

First our men were shelled by every enemy gun, and then, at 5.30am, were assaulted by a huge column consisting of no less than a full division, plus a regiment of three battalions.

The Loyal North Lancashire men were simply overwhelmed in their shallow trenches by sheer weight in numbers, whilst the Wiltshires who were caught in the open, were literally almost annihilated. The ponderous mass of enemy swept over the crest, turned the right flank of our line below, swarmed round the Hampshires and General Baldwin’s column, which had to which had to give ground and were only extricated with great difficulty and very heavy losses.

Towards this supreme struggle the absolute last two battalions from our general reserve were now hurried, but by 10am, the effort of the enemy was spent. Soon their shattered remnants began to trickle back, leaving a track of corpses behind them, and by nightfall, except prisoners or wounded, no live Turk was left upon our side of the slope.”

Alfred was later presumed to have been killed on or since that date. He is remembered on the Helles Memorial.

William would later receive his son’s war gratuity payment, the 1914/15 Star, British War Medal and Allied Victory Medal. The family would also receive a memorial plaque and scroll bearing Alfred’s name and in recognition of his sacrifice.

Rank: Private
Service No: 11846
Date of Death: 09/08/1915
Regiment/Service: The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, 6th Bn.
Memorial: HELLES MEMORIAL

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This article has been reproduced with kind permission from the DBBC young roots heritage project. The young people identified and researched the the servicemen pictured in a 1916 Bolton Journal and Guardian supplement who were killed at Gallipoli. You can visit their website by clicking on the DBBC logo.
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