Doncaster schoolboy ‘one of world’s youngest solo pilots’

Doncaster youngster Oliver Campbell takes flight.
Doncaster youngster Oliver Campbell takes flight.

A high-flying schoolboy celebrated his 14th birthday in style - by taking to the skies to become one of the youngest solo glider pilots in the world.

Hatfield youngster Oliver Campbell made three solo flights from Burn Gliding Club near Selby in North Yorkshire to mark the occasion on Thursday, June 30.

And it is believed the Hingerhill School pupil could well be one of the youngest glider pilots to ever fly solo in the world.

Russell Walsh, spokesman for Burn Gliding Club, said: “The governing body of gliding, the British Gliding Association, stipulates that glider pilots have to be 14-years-old or more to go solo – three years before they can drive a car.

“All student pilots go through a great deal of training before they are allowed to go solo.

“They are constantly assessed by the club’s team of instructors in two seater trainer gliders and all students have to complete a number of exercises to a good standard before they can go solo.

“He went on to fly three solo flights over the course of the day, each of which demonstrated the high level of skill that he has achieved.”

He added: “Oliver is a real asset to the club and has been a member at Burn Gliding Club for about two years.

“He certainly has the potential to become a leading glider pilot over the next few years.”

Oliver was encouraged to take to the skies by his grandad David Chafer, who has been a member for more than 30 years.

Burn Gliding Club has three hard runways allowing it to operate all year round.

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