Air of Authority - A History of RAF Organisation

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Air Vice-Marshal Sir Hazelton Nicholl

Hazelton Robson                 b: 14 Jan 1882                r: 15 Mar 1942                d: 14 Aug 1956

KBE - 11 Jun 1942 (CBE -15 Mar 1929, OBE - 3 Jun 1919), CB - 9 Jun 1938,  LoH, C - 1916, MiD - 17 Mar 1941, MInstT.

For a list of foreign decoration abbreviations, click here

(Army): - 2 Lt: 15 Feb 1915?, Lt: 1 Aug 1915, (T) Capt: 14 Oct 1915, Capt: 1 Jun 1916, (T) Maj: 1 Aug 1916.

(RAF): - Maj: 1 Apr 1918, Sqn Ldr: 1 Aug 1919, Wg Cdr: 1 Jan 1922, Gp Capt: 1 Jul 1929, A/Cdre: 1 Jul 1933, AVM: 1 Jan 1937.

xx xxx 1899:           Soldier (Qualified as Signaller), London Scottish Volunteers. (South Africa 1899-1902)

26 May 1903:           Trooper, South Rhodesia Volunteers.  

xx xxx 1904:           

15 Feb 1915:           Appointed to a Commission in the RFC Special Reserve

xx xxx 1915:             U/T Pilot,

28 Apr 1915:           Flying Officer, RFC Special Reserve.

15 May 1915:           Embarked for France

xx xxx 1915:             Pilot, No 8 Sqn RFC. (BE2c Western Front)

14 Oct 1915:            Flight Commander, No 8? Sqn RFC.

31 Oct 1915:            Returned to Home Establishment

12 Dec 1915:           Instructor, Central Flying School.  

 1 Aug 1916:            Squadron Commander, CFS

10 Feb 1917:            In transit?

15 Feb 1917:            Officer Commanding, No 84 Sqn RFC. (SE5, SE5A Beaulieu)

10 Aug 1917?:          Supernumerary, No 6 Sqn RFC. (RE8 Western Front)

19 Nov 1917:           Officer Commanding, No 110 Sqn. (DH9A UK/Western Front)

31 Aug 1918:            Re-embarked to France (by air with No 110 Sqn)

22 Dec 1918:            Officer Commanding, 41st Wing

 2 Apr 1919:             Temporary duty with 91st Wing

 1 Aug 1919:             Awarded Permanent Commission as a Major

xx xxx 1919:             Chief Technical Instructor, RAF Eastchurch.

 1 Apr 1920:             Air Staff - Training, HQ Inland Area.  

13 Jan 1922:             Attended Senior Officers' Course, School of Military Administration.

10 Apr 1922:            Air Staff, HQ No 7 Group.  

 3 Jul 1922:               Staff Officer, Directorate of Training and Organisation

xx xxx 1923:             Staff Officer, Directorate of Training and Staff Duties.

Oct/Nov 1923:         SD 2, Deputy Directorate of Staff Duties.

15 Sep 1925:            Attended RN Staff College, Greenwich.

 3 Sep 1926:             Officer Commanding, No 70 Sqn. (Vernon, Victoria Hinaidi)

26 Nov 1926:           ?

 9 May 1929:            Deputy Director of Training.

 8 Jul 1929:               Deputy Director of Personal Services.

23 Jan 1931:             Deputy Director of Manning.

 1 Mar 1932:             Supernumerary, RAF Depot.

26 Apr 1932:            Officer Commanding, RAF Base, Calshot.

 9 Sep 1933:              AOC, No 23 Group.

19 Mar 1934:            AOC, Central Area.

19 Nov 1935:            Member of the Air Board, RAAF.

10 Mar 1938:            AOC, RAF Middle East.

 5 Apr 1939:              AOA, HQ Fighter Command.

He was born in India and educated at St George's School, Ascot.  Joining the RFC at the age of 33, he was considerably older than the average pilot and consequently became known by the sobriquet, 'Daddy'.  In fact he had only managed to get into the flying Corps through the influence of Sir David Henderson, to whom he was related.  However, he soon showed that he was the equal of  peers, even if he was ten years older than most of them, gaining RAeC Certificate No 1083 on 16 February 1915.

He was awarded the CBE for operations against the Akhwan in Iraq between November 1927 and May 1928.  In 1944 he became Controller of the RAF Benevolent Fund, retiring from the post in 1947.

Announcement and Citation for the award of Commander of the Order of the British Empire

NICHOLL, Hazelton Robson, W/C

"in recognition for services rendered in connection with the operations against the Akhwan in the Southern Desert, Iraq, during the period November 1927-May 1928". 

(London Gazette - 15 March 1929)

 "Wing Commander Nicholl proved himself to be a very fine leader, and set a magnificent example to all personnel with whom he came in contact.  He maintained his squadron in such a high state of efficiency as to be able to keep all advanced posts  and columns supplied with essentials by air during the whole course of the operations.

 He was in charge of the advanced post at Rukhamiyah during the bombing of Es Safa, and it was in a considerable measure due to his efforts that the long distance attack on this place was successfully carried out."

(Source - Air 30/79)

This page was last updated on 16/12/22

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