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Frank Morris
Frank Morris. 17 May 2023

Up in the Air: A photo gallery of Bert Hinkler, “airman extraordinaire”


Hinkler set out to construct a glider of his dreams. His efforts paid off. Bert, only 19 at the time, flew his glider to a height of 30 feet. A beach, 12 miles from Bundaberg, was the staging place for this epic flight. Everybody turned up. Travelling shows and carnivals were next on the flight plan.

Thanks to his amazing skill and endurance, Hinkler was the first to fly solo from England to Australia in 1928.

Hinkler got some instructions after he landed his Avro Avian right in the thick of a growing mushroom of people who wanted to ‘wish him well’ on his epic flight from England.

Bert Hinkler lived life

Bert Hinkler lived by the motto, “He can who thinks he can”. Hinkler was more than a great airman. People who knew him well all agree that he was a man who was thoroughly courageous without being reckless, modest and persevering; a man of high ideals in every sense of the term. When he died in 1933, after his plane crashed over the Italian Alps, Hinkler was honoured with a full military funeral in Florence, a fitting tribute to a  superior aviator. When WW1 ended, there were young pilots who would go further and become figures in world aviation history. Bert Hinkler was one of them.        


Italians examine the wreckage of Hinkler’s aircraft near the village of Castelle San Niciolo in 1933.

Clockwise from far left: Bert Hinkler, a portrait by Australian artist Walter Jardine; Hinkler (second from right) and other pilots outside the premises of A.V. Roe & Company; Avian Cirrus and Avro Baby at Brisbane Museum.

Sitting pretty. Hinkler finds the time to relax.

The Bert Hinkler Story

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