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Date posted: 13-06-2018
Alan and Laura will receive full training courses to the level of Private Pilot’s Licence. Flight training will commence with the EFG School later this month, and with reasonable weather conditions the scholars can expect to complete both the 45-hour programme and ground school examinations this summer.
Captain Gary Merchant, Chairman of the NDMFS Selection Panel, says: “Many of the 220 applicants put forth impressive presentations, and the panel faced a difficult task. Alan and Laura showed comprehension of the difficult road ahead, and we were impressed by the sustainability of their plans, their knowledge of the industry and their strong commitment to succeed. Plus, both Alan and Laura excelled in the ground and flight tests – a win-win for the scholars and the charitable NDMFS.”
Alan’s ambition to become a pilot began in his youth, after the loss of his father at seven years old led to him being taken into foster care with a family living near Rochester Airport. He began volunteering at the local flight school as a teenager, where his duties included booking flying lessons, refuelling and cleaning aircraft and learning about maintenance. While training in accountancy and tax with a local firm, Alan also works part-time at Rochester Airport as an Operations Officer.
Laura has been awarded the Biggin Hill Airport Award within the NDMFS scheme. She recently began working at the airport as a Handling Agent, thanks to her impressive record of employment in the security industry, including with the Ministry of Defence. For the past three years Laura has also been an RAF Reservist, and has won the Beryl Markham Trophy for determination and commitment. She dreams of becoming a bush pilot, working in remote areas of Africa, Australia or New Zealand.
The Nick Davidson Memorial Flying Scholarship was set up following the death of Airbus Captain and local pilot Nick Davidson in 2012, who worked as a flight instructor at London Biggin Hill Airport in the early 1990s. The scheme provides two full flying scholarships every year, thanks to the support of Nick’s wife Alina and co-sponsors Biggin Hill Airport, Shipping & Airlines, Adams Aviation Supply Company, Pooleys Flight Equipment and Falcon Flying Services, which owns the EFG School.
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About London Biggin Hill Airport
London Biggin Hill Airport is located 12 miles from central London and offers award-winning VIP handling, a choice of FBOs, extensive hangarage, support and maintenance services for all ranges of business jets.
A designated UK Port of Entry, Biggin Hill is free of runway slot constraints. An exclusive six-minute helicopter transfer service to and from the heart of London makes it the fastest transfer of any London airport.
Biggin Hill is the only dedicated business aviation airport within the capital and is already home to over 65 commercial and aviation activities.
There are very few places in the world other than Biggin Hill where aircraft operators and support companies can conduct all aspects of their business operations, management and maintenance at the heart of a global city and with the confidence in their ability to expand and develop over time.