Born in the Edwardian era, he first became interested in lepidoptery c.1912 while a student at Leighton Park School, Reading.
Although technically a hobbyist (by trade he was an accountant with the NHS), Cole was more than just an eminent amateur.
His collection of native British moths and butterflies, was both extensive and beautifully preserved, recorded and presented.
On his death his collection of moths was left to a national institution for continued study with the butterflies and the tools of his trade offered at Flints’ (25% buyer’s premium) sale of Fine Instruments of Science, Medicine and Books on May 24.
The estimate on the case was £4000-6000 and it sold just under expectations at £3800.
Also pictured here is a lot comprising Cole’s bamboo-handled net with a linen bag and various specimen jars, trays and tins – the Edwardian butterfly collector’s took kit – that took £85.