Alfred THORLEY
Rank: Gunner
Number: 154990
Unit: A Battery, 85th Brigade ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY
Date of Death: 16 September 1917
Age: 35
Cemetery: Stockport Borough Cemetery

Like his father, also called Alfred, the future soldier worked in the local hat making industry. For many years, the family home was at 40 Canal Street and Alfred was the second child and eldest son. In 1905, he had left home when he married Mary Ellen Royle at St Mary’s Church. They lived at 8 Adcroft Street and are known to have had a son who thye called Arthur.

It is not known when Alfred enlisted into the armyn at Stockport and was assigned to the artillery. The 85th Brigade went overseas in the late spring of 1915 and fought throughout the Battle of the Somme the following year. Also fighting on the Somme was Alfred’s younger brother and news would soon come that Walter had been killed in action on 29 July during probably his first tour of duty in the trenches.

At some point, Alfred was badly wounded. This must have been before the beginning of December 1916 as the 85th was disbanded at that time and the men reassigned.

He will have been treated in a field hospital some miles behind the front line and then been further evacauated possibly to one of the base hospitals along the channel coast near to Calais. At some point, he was brought back to Britain and admitted as patient to the Bradford Miltiary Hospital. His condtion never really improved and he died of his wounds on 16 September 1917.

His body was brought back to Stockport and buried with full military honours. It was attended by his parents and four sisters – Ada, May, Polly (Elizabeth) and Florrie.

   
           
   
     
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