Private Arthur Gilbert Altham
516 2/2nd East Lancashire Field Ambulance Royal Army Medical Corps
Drowned on the Royal Edward, 13th August 1915, aged 17
Lived at 49 Rosehill Road
Commemorated on the Helles Memorial, Turkey
St Peters Memorial, Burnley

Burnley Lads Club Memorial

Burnley Express 26/12/1914 ( poem from his mother)
Burnley Express 4/9/1915

Arthur Gilbert Altham was born the son of Alfred Edwin and Annie Altham of 28 Cromwell St., Stoneyholme. He enlisted in Burnley as Private 516 in the 2nd/2nd (East Lancs) Field Ambulance, Royal Army Medical Corps.

(Burnley Express and Advertiser 4th September 1915)
Pte. Arthur Gilbert Altham’s parents received official intimation at 28 Cromwell-street on Thursday Morning. Pte. Altham was only 17 years of age and joined what is known as “Callams Own” in October. He was an old St. Peters day and Sunday school scholar and after leaving day school he continued his studies at evening classes, gaining exhibitions which kept him there. He was particularly , studying cotton work, and at the time he enlisted was learning the jacquard trade at Grey’s Mill. He was the youngest child of the family and his feared loss has occasioned his parents much distress. His mother4 ha contributed many poems to the “Express” under the name of Aunie Altham.

The following letter has been received from his former Sunday School teacher:-
The County Bank House
September 1st 1915
“Dear Mrs. Altham- Only last evening I heard that Arthur was thought to be on the Royal Edward, and I write to express my sympathy with you in all your anxiety and trouble. When the other day I sent to you Arthur’s “Bible Reading Unions Notes” I little thought that he was amongst the victims of that sad disaster. Indeed I did not know he had left England. There is still a possibility that he is amongst the rescued, and for your sakes I hope it may be so, but if, in God’s providence, he has been taken away, I do not think that anybody I have known will be more ready for the call than Arthur. He was a thoughtful and good lad, and I am sure that you will feel the anxiety and the starin of suspence very much” :- with sympathy, Your faithfully
Harold Holden

November 2001 Arthur G. Altham -a white cross in memory placed for Remembrance Sunday outside the Thompson Centre.




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