Arthur Brocklehurst was born on 21 December 1893, the son of Elizabeth and Thomas Brocklehurst, a silk weaver of 9 St George's Street, south Macclesfield. In 1901, seven-year-old Arthur was living at that address with his parents and siblings Thomas (23), Harry (18), Frank (16), Louisa (15), Roland Hill (13) and Elsie (10). By 1911 Arthur's father had died; the family was at the same address and Arthur was employed as an apprentice letterpress printer for the printing firm Heath Bros.
By 1918, Arthur's mother was living at 21 Park Street, Macclesfield.
Arthur was educated at Sutton St George Church of England Primary School, achieving standard grade VII; after leaving school he enrolled at Macclesfield Technical School for two years to further his education.
Arthur enlisted in Stockport in May 1915, joining the Royal Field Artillery with service number 4828. He was drafted to France on 25 December 1915.
It is not known exactly where Gunner Brocklehurst was killed, but his death was reported in the Macclesfield Times on 27 September 1918:
Mrs Brocklehurst, 21 Park Street, Macclesfield, has received news that her son, Gunner Arthur Brocklehurst, RFA, was killed in France on September 15th. The notification was conveyed in a letter from the officer of the battalion who states: "Your son was killed in action on the night of the 15th inst... He always showed remarkable courage and was devoted to his work."
Twenty-four years of age, Gunner Brocklehurst enlisted in May, 1915 and had served in France over three years. He was gassed a short time ago, but soon recovered and returned to his battery. Educated at St George's School, the deceased was a member of the Canton Street Bible Association and in civil life was employed by Messrs Heath Bros., printers.
Gunner Arthur Brocklehurst is buried at Hermies Hill British Cemetery, in grave ref. IV. A. 12. His mother asked for the inscription “GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN THAN THIS” to be added to his headstone. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission holds casualty details for Gunner Arthur Brocklehurst, and he is listed on the Imperial War Museum’s Lives of the First World War website.
Locally, Gunner Arthur Brocklehurst is commemorated on the Park Green, Town Hall, St Michael's Church and St George's Men's Bible Association (Canton St) war memorials, and St John's Church roll of honour.
Brother of Roland Hill Brocklehurst, who served as Rifleman 32604 with the 1/5th South Lancashire Regiment.
GRO (England & Wales) Index: Births
Census (England & Wales): 1901, 1911
National School Admission Registers and Log-books (Find My Past)
WWI British Army Medal Rolls Index Cards (Ancestry)
WWI Absent Voters Lists (FindMyPast)
Soldiers Died in the Great War (Find My Past)
Lives of the First World War website
Commonwealth War Graves Commission website
Macclesfield Times: 27 September 1918
Research by Rosie Rowley, Macclesfield.