A young flying enthusiast has taken his first steps to becoming a pilot with the help of a Royal Air Forces Association Flying Scholarship.
Samuel Page (17), from Melton, who is an RAF Air Cadet at 1279 Squadron (Melton Mowbray), says he can’t wait to get back in the air after completing a course of civilian flying lessons courtesy of the charity.
The RAF Association, which this year celebrated its 100th Flying Scholar, rewards candidates for their community fundraising and welfare work. Samuel received one of five 12-hour flying courses, which he undertook at South Warwickshire Flying School.
He said: “It was an incredible experience. The instructors at the flying school were wonderful - accommodating, patient, and kind. I will go back to my squadron recommending this scheme to all my fellow cadets.
“I will never forget this experience, and I thank the association for this memorable opportunity.”
The Royal Air Forces Association, which provides welfare support to the RAF family, launched its scholarship programme in 2008. It is open to the RAF Air Cadets, which includes the Air Training Corps (ATC) and the Combined Cadet Force (RAF), and the Girls Venture Corps Air Cadets (GVCAC). In 2016, the scheme was broadened to include members of the Air Scouts/Air Explorer Scouts.
Twelve scholarships are available in 2019. Applicants must be at least 16 on January 1 and under 20 on June 1. They must also have served at least 12 months with the RAF Air Cadets, GVCAC or Air (Explorer) Scouts.
One of the successful applicants will receive 35 hours of training in a light aircraft, and, depending on their rate of progress, could earn their Light Aircraft Pilot Licence. The eleven runners-up will each receive 12 hours training.
The application form can be downloaded from www.rafa.org.uk/flying-scholarships.
The closing date for applications is January 31.