For most young people flying means going on holiday. They will never take control of an aircraft themselves but for a group of young Nuneaton based Air Cadets who recently took to the skies during a visit to RAF Cosford, taking control was what it was all about.
This was the first time that two of the group of six thirteen and fourteen-year-olds from 121 ( Nuneaton ) Squadron had been flying with the Air Cadets. All Six cadets had a 20 minute flight in one of No. 8 Air Experience Flight's (AEF) single engine Grob Tutors , not long by holiday flight standards but a flight in a Tutor when you get to fly the aircraft yourself is something completely different.
During an Air Experience Flight the pilot taxis out to the runway, takes off and finds some clear airspace. Depending on the conditions at the time the pilot may offer you the opportunity to try some aerobatics, alternately you may be given the chance of taking control of the aircraft yourself.
When the pilot hands over the control of the aircraft, you will hear the words, "You have control." You then place your had on the control column and your feet on the rudder peddles and reply, “I have control sir” and that's it, you're now flying one of the RAF's Grob Tutor's. Don't worry, the pilot will guide you through the controls and you may even get the chance to try out one or two aerobatic manoeuvres yourself. No other youth group could offer you such an opportunity.
After her flight, fourteen-year-old Nuneaton based Air Cadet Holly Odam said, “This was the first time I've been flying at No.8 AEF with the cadets. It was a totally new experience. The best part of the flight was when I got to take control of the aircraft myself. The pilot said, 'You have control', once I was comfortable with the controls I replied 'I have control, sir!' It was quite scary to begin with but once I adjusted myself to it, it was great fun. I would definitely recommend it to anyone and I can't wait to fly again.
Flt Lt Paul Hincks Officer Commanding 121 (Nuneaton ) Squadron said . “This was the first time that two of our cadets had been flying and I hope it's given them a taste of what it's like to take control of an aircraft themselves. Its one thing going in a holiday jet but it's a different story in a two-seater airplane when you! get to Take Control”.
He added, “Flying is one of the core activities for Air cadets. It's the unique opportunity to fly that makes the Air Cadets so different from any other youth organization, so if you're interested in flying and want to take control yourself why not come along and Join Our Team.”
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