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Hamish Grateful for Opportunity of a Lifetime

Published: 18 Nov 2020

A young Royal Air Force technician has thanked the RAF Charitable Trust for giving him the chance of a lifetime!

Senior Aircraftsman (Technician) Hamish Hunter, based at RAF Benson, was one of 30 successful applicants in the 2020 Junior Ranks' Pilot Scholarship Scheme, which is funded by the Trust in partnership with RAF Sport Aircraft.

Launched in 2014 and open to members of the RAF's Junior Ranks (JRs), the scheme aims to increase JRs' knowledge and understanding of the technologies used in aviation by giving each scholar the opportunity to learn to fly and achieve solo standard in a light aircraft. 

Although the COVID 19 outbreak meant his training was delayed, Hamish began studying in his spare time in order to be fully prepared once he received the green light to get into the cockpit. He said: "I scheduled a meeting with my flying instructor at which point it really began to sink in that I would be taught to a level that allowed me to fly as pilot in command, completely solo."

Fitting his training around his busy day job as an Avionic Aircraft Technician, Hamish completed his training at weekends and in the evenings, jumping at every chance to get airborne. Just eight days after his first lesson, he completed his first solo flight.

"I would like to say a huge thank you to the RAF Charitable Trust for this opportunity of a lifetime. For those who have thought about learning to fly, this is, without a doubt, an amazing way to start! Thanks again for the scholarship, the generous supply of study materials, maps, and clothing - and the knowledge of flight that will last a lifetime."

For further information on the Junior Ranks' Pilot Scholarship Scheme, please visit

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