Iain's flight of fancy becomes a reality

PUBLISHED: 16:52 13 July 2006 | UPDATED: 14:45 12 May 2010

Iain Montrose has completed a gliding scholarship at RAF Henlow

Iain Montrose has completed a gliding scholarship at RAF Henlow

A TEENAGER passionate about airplanes has undertaken a gliding scholarship at RAF Henlow. Iain Montrose, 17, of Betony Vale, Royston, applied for the scholarship through the Air Cadets four months ago. Iain had to become familiar with a motor-glider that

A TEENAGER passionate about airplanes has undertaken a gliding scholarship at RAF Henlow.

Iain Montrose, 17, of Betony Vale, Royston, applied for the scholarship through the Air Cadets four months ago.

Iain had to become familiar with a motor-glider that has a swingspan of about 37ft.

He had lessons in turning and stalling and at the end of the nine-hour course he had the opportunity to fly solo.

"It was very scary," he said. "When I got up in the air I turned right, looked out of the side window and thought 'where is my instructor'?"

The scholarship took three months to complete, but Iain admitted the first few flights in the glider tested his nerves because he had only flown a two-seater Cessna.

"It's different from flying in a larger aircraft because you get a 360 degree view of the world," he said.

"And although it's pretty scary seeing the world go away from you, the glider is very responsive and it's a joy to fly.

"I love being in the air. Not many youngsters get to go up in the air or fly solo, so knowing that you're that 1 per cent of the adolescent population who can fly is unbelievable."

Now Iain has completed the scholarship, he can apply to be a Staff Cadet in order to do advanced training.

"I hope to do it because it wasn't just the flying that I enjoyed; I also liked the social life."

Iain has been interested in aircraft ever since he was taken to the Duxford Imperial War Museum as a five-year-old. And when he got a flying lesson for his birthday he said he became "hooked".

Iain's dad, Andrew, is a member of the Henlow Flying Club and is currently working towards his private pilot licence.

At the moment Iain has a part-time job at Duxford and is now learning to drive a car, but aims to join the RAF as a pilot in the future.

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