Air-Vice Marshal Adrian Cole

Accession Number ART50241
Collection type Art
Measurement sheet: 60.2 x 22.7 cm
Object type Work on paper
Physical description pastel on paper
Maker Unknown
Place made Western Front
Date made 1917
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Item copyright: Copyright unknown


Depicts Air Vice Marshal Adrian Lindley Trevor Cole (1895-1966) CBE, DSO, MC, DFC. Air Vice Marshal Cole enlisted on 28 January 1916 and embarked from Melbourne aboard HMAT Orsova on 16 March 1916 as a corporal with B Flight, No. 1 Squadron, Australian Flying Corps (AFC). He was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant on 15 June 1916, graduated as Flying Officer on 7 November 1916, Lieutenant on 7 February 1917 and Captain on 15 August 1917. Cole was awarded the Military Cross on 16 August 1917 and later the Distinguished Flying Cross on 8 February 1919. He enlisted with the RAAF on 31 March 1921 and as a Group Captain he was awarded a Commander of the Order of the British Empire on 11 May 1937. He served with the RAAF during the Second World War and was awarded the Distinguished Service Order on 2 October 1942. He was later promoted to Air Vice Marshal and discharged on 17 April 1946.
The AFC was established in 1913. In 1915 Australia was asked by Britain to form compile squadrons for service with the RFC. Australia responded by despatching No. 1 squadron to Egypt. During the next two years the squadron operated first from Heliopolis and later in Palestine and Syria. More squadrons were raised in Australia for the Western Front. No. 2, 3 and 4 squadrons arrived in France during August, September and December 1917 respectively. No. 2 squadron (flying DH5s) was attached to the Third Army and during the Battle of Cambrai in November 1917 carried out patrol duties, ground strafing of enemy troops and bombing. No. 3 squadron (flying RE8s) was supporting the last phase of the Passchendaele campaign in Flanders. The last Australian squadron to arrive (No. 4 flying Sopwith Camels) took up its duties with the First Army. At the end of the First World War, the AFC was disbanded and replaced by the Australian Air Corps which became the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in 1921.