Hertfordshire aerodrome’s young flyers

A COMMERCIAL pilot who flies for one of the country’s leading airlines was one of the guests giving youngsters an insight into the world of aviation at a Hertfordshire aerodrome.

They learned all about aviation safety, aircraft marshalling, radio communication, navigation, and the principles of flight, as they took part in the three day Young Aviators event at Panshanger Aerodrome – The North London Flying School – on Sunday, Thursday and Friday.

The 18-strong group, aged 11-18, enjoyed an airfield tour, a talk from several pilots (including Daniel Scott and Craig Saunders who both achieved their Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL) before they even had their driving licence) on how to pass the PPL, as well as a talk by Roland Knight, a commercial pilot for Thomson, who spoke about an average day in his working life.

They were also given the chance to look around a microlight that was built by a young aviator as part of a special programme, and to investigate an aerobatic aircraft (the Extra 200), which they were also given a talk on.

The fun and games didn’t stop there either, as Dr Rashid Ali and Dr Charikleia Lada from the University of Hertfordshire visited to lecture about wind tunnels, while Noel Harvey ran a workshop on model aircraft.

A competition testing the youngsters on what they had learned on safety also saw the prize winners go for a flight with one of the base’s pilots, Paul Knott.

Then to finish the week off parents joined the pupils for a special flight around the area with members at the aerodrome.

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Volunteer and pilot Craig Saunders said: “I think the programme has been a great success and the atmosphere of all the ‘young aviator’ days has been magical, to every individual, I have personally loved helping out as I’ve gained valuable experience.”

Sue Hart, MD at the aerodrome, thanked all the helpers adding: “they really made the event happen.

“It’s wonderful to give these young people an experience that they will not forget and inspire them about aviation!”

* This weekend Panshanger Aerodrome is holding a special Revival Day, for more information click on the link (top right).