At 14 he joined GWR as a telegraph lad clerk and was promoted two years later to the company's headquarters at Paddington, London, where he served in the offices of the telegraph superintendent, chief engineer, and (from 1904) general manager. He was made head of the staff and labour department in the general manager's office in 1912 and chief clerk in 1913. By 1919 he was assistant to the general manager who he succeeded in June 1921. In 1929 he left GWR to become the executive chairman of Associated Electrical Industries Ltd (AEI). He was knighted in 1924 and died in Reading in 1956.