Albert E. Coates

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Remaining Cedar Trees forming the Mt Pleasant Avenue of Honour. Photograph: Bill Garnet, 2018.



Albert Ernest Coates was born at Mount Pleasant on 28 January 1895.

Albert Coates was a medic in both World War One and World War Two. He enlisted in the A.I.F. on 17 August 1914, in the 7th Infantry Battalion. During World War One he was attached to the intelligence staff of 1 ANZAC Corps in February 1917, and was involved in the Gallipoli Landing, serving there from 5 April 1915 to 7 January 1916.. Upon returning to Australia he worked at night as a postal worked to support himself through medical school.[1]

His initial World War One posting saw him serve with the 7th Battalion as an ambulance driver within medical section. His interest in medicine was useful and he was engaged as 'medical assistant' during an outbreak of measles onboard the ship. He was then responsible for sterilising needles as the men were inoculated for typhoid.[2]

After the war he graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine in 1924. The degrees of Doctor of Medicine and Master of Surgery followed in 1926 and 1927 respectively.[3]

Albert Coates enlisted for service during World War Two on 1 January 1941. He was appointed Senior Surgeon to the 2nd/10th Australian General Hospital with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and sailed for Singapore. He was taken Prisoner of War on 17 March 1942 on the island of Sumatra and was sent to the infamous Burma-Thai Railway. He was made Chief Medical Officer of the hospital at Nakom Paton - a primitive affair capable of holding 10 000 men. He was recovered in Siam on 20 August 1945. After the war he was called to testify in the Japanese War Crimes trials.[4]

Sir Albert Coates died at the Royal Melbourne Hospital on 8 October 1977.[5]


The World War One service of Albert Coates is recognised on the Ballarat Avenue of Honour, and the Mt Pleasant Avenue of Honour.

A statue of Albert Coates stands in Sturt Street, Ballarat.

Items relating to Albert Coates can be found in the gold museum, Ballarat.[6]

See also

Ballarat Avenue of Honour

Mt Pleasant Avenue of Honour

World War One

World War Two

Stanley R. Close

Maurice L. McLeod



  1. Ballarat Courier ANZAC Day Special, 25 April 2015.
  2., accessed 05 August 2017.
  3., accessed 05 August 2017.
  4., accessed 05 August 2017.
  5., accessed 05 August 2017.
  6. The Miner, 02 April 2015.

Further Reading

External links

--Beth Kicinski 12:55, 19 June 2013 (EST); --Clare K.Gervasoni 15:50, 5 August 2017 (AEST)

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