Sir Alfred was born in Wolverhampton on 8 May 1885, the son of Alfred William and Mary Hickman and grandson of Sir Alfred Hickman. In 1891, they were living at The Hollies, Upper Penn, together with Alfred’s siblings Phillis L., Evelyn I. and William Christie. By 1901 they were at 18 Goldthorn Hill, Sedgley, and Alfred had gained a further sibling, Arthur. On 21 August 1902 his father, Alfred William, died.
By 1911 he was in Preston Military Barracks as a Lieutenant serving as an Adjutant with the 4th (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards. He was later promoted to Captain. From 16 August 1914, he served during the First World War. On 12 September 1914, the Midland Counties Express reported that he had been wounded and taken prisoner following the charge mounted by the 4th Dragoon Guards and 9th Lancers at Audregnies on 24 August 1914. However, he appears to have recovered from these wounds, and survived the war.
On 16 January 1919, Alfred married Lilian B. Mander in Wolverhampton, and the couple had three children – Alfred H. W. (in Andover in 1920), Patrick N. (in Amesbury in 1921) and Irene (in Birmingham in 1923). Alfred died in Gloucestershire on 11 March 1947.