The AIF Project

Albert Wallace HEATHCOTE

Regimental number734
Place of birthHume Creek New South Wales
ReligionPresbyterian
OccupationLineman
AddressInverness, Culcairn, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation19
Next of kinMrs Heathcote, Inverness, Culcairn, New South Wales
Enlistment date22 August 1914
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll22 August 1914
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name3rd Battalion D Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/20/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A14 Euripides on 19 October 1914
Rank from Nominal RollCorporal
Unit from Nominal Roll3rd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 3 May 1917
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
26
Medals

Military Medal


Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 62
Date: 19 April 1917

Family/military connectionsBrothers: 6765 Pte Bruce HEATHCOTE, 23rd Bn, returned to Australia, 8 April 1918; 6766 Pte Cyril HEATHCOTE, 23rd Bn, killed in action, 8 October 1917; 553 Pte Thomas HEATHCOTE, 11th Bn, returned to Australia, 3 February 1915.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

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