b. 3rd Q 1857 Martley, Worcestershire. d. 4th Q 1925 Burton on Trent, Nottinghamshire.
DATE OF EM ACTION: 20/02/1913 Burton on Trent, Nottinghamshire.
Allen was born in 1857 in Martley, Worcestershire, to an unknown father and Jane Holliday, who was very young when Allen was born. Allen spent his early years living at the Rodney Inn, Berrow Green with his grandparents Charles and Amelia Holliday. Charles was a farmer and innkeeper by profession. In 1871, Allen's mother Jane married James Hill, and Allen was still living at the Rodney Inn. His grandfather was now a widower, and was farming over 60 acres. In 1877, Allen married Alma Mary Davis in Worcester, and they went on to have 14 children (10 survived infancy). Allen worked as an agricultural labourer, before in 1882, he and his family moved to Stapenhill, near Burton on Trent, where Allen began work as a brewery labourer. They lived firstly at 14 Short Street, then 219 Heath Road. Sadly three of his sons died young, one of whom was killed in action in France in 1918. After the end of the war, Allen became shopkeeper. Allen died in 1925, aged 68.
On 20th February, 1913, at the Burton Brewery Company's Work, Burton-on-Trent, a number of men were lime-washing the ceiling of a hop-press room. On the wall, about two or three feet above the scaffolding on which the men were standing, a shaft was running, driving two cog-wheels. One of the men, named Arbon, was leaning over the shaft when he was suddenly caught and dragged into the machinery. Holliday, who was standing near, at once seized hold of him and became entangled in the gear-wheels himself. The clothes of both men were torn from them, and they were in imminent peril. With great presence of mind Wagstaff seized hold of Holliday and succeeded in keeping clear of the cogwheels. Holliday escaped with very serious injuries, but Arbon unfortunately lost his life.
There can be no doubt that by their plucky action both Holliday and Wagstaff incurred the gravest risk to their own lives.
BURIAL LOCATION: UNKNOWN.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: PRIVATELY HELD. SOLD AT DNW IN SEPT 2012 FOR £1,650.
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