Mission Aviation Fellowship

Liz Inwood ‘Taildragger’ Scholarship open for applications

Current pilots under the age of 35 are invited to apply for this year’s Liz Inwood ‘Taildragger’ Scholarship.The scholarship, run by the Vintage Aircraft Club, provides five hours transition training from nose wheel aircraft to tailwheel heritage types, such as the iconic Tiger Moth.

The Vintage Aircraft Club (originally known as the Vintage Aircraft Group) was formed in 1964 and now has nearly 400 members across the UK, providing a focal body for owners, pilots and enthusiasts of vintage and classic light aircraft.

The club runs fly-ins, social and training events for the benefit of its members. Many of the VAC members’ vintage aircraft are taildraggers and the club encourages young pilots to transition from nose wheel to taildragger aircraft thus providing an opportunity to fly more vintage types.

The Vintage Aircraft Club’s Liz Inwood ‘Taildragger’ Scholarship, named in memory of the late Tiger Moth pilot and flying instructor Liz Inwood, is offered annually to a licence holder under the age of 35. The successful recipient is offered five hours flying to assist them in transitioning from flying nose wheel aircraft to tailwheel heritage types. The applicant must be the holder of a current PPL, NPPL or LAPL, with 100 hours total flying time of which at least 50 hours are as a pilot in command, completed at the time of application. Applications are open until 31 August 2023.

Applicants should apply via the club’s website– vintageaircraftclub.org.uk – where they can download an application form. Pre-entry requirements include holding a valid PPL, NPPL or LAPL; be under 35 years of age; and have at least 100 hours total fling time, with 50 hours minimum as pilot-in-command at the time of application.

The selection panel may then contact applicants with additional questions and may ask them to attend an interview, either in person or remotely. The award includes aircraft hire and instructor’s fees, but does not include travel, accommodation or subsistence costs.

The award will be paid direct to a suitable flying school agreed between the selection panel and the scholarship winner. The winner will also be invited, as a guest of the Vintage Aircraft Club, to attend the Light Aircraft Association’s Grass Roots Fly-in at Popham Airfield at the beginning of September, where they will be formally issued the scholarship.

Now in its tenth year, the 2022 winner was 25-year-old Toby Hudson who was presented with the award at the Light Aircraft Association’s (LAA) Grass Roots Fly-In at Popham last September. Commenting on his award at the time, Toby said, “I’m extremely excited and honoured to have been awarded the Liz Inwood Taildragger Scholarship for this year. It has always been a lifelong dream to learn to fly vintage taildraggers. I can remember back to when I was a young boy, visiting airfields and museums with my grandad and looking at all the vintage aircraft, military and civilian, wishing one day I might be able to climb into one and take it flying.

“Presently, being based at Turweston Flying Club and seeing all the different taildraggers that visit daily, it’s always remained a burning desire to want to get my tailwheel differences training, gaining these skills as a pilot and being able to join the tailwheel community. Not only this, but now being a Flight Instructor, I would be delighted to be able to put the scholarship to more than just personal use, continuing Liz Inwood’s incredible legacy. This will allow me to teach others to learn to fly and enjoy the experience of vintage tailwheel aircraft with thanks to this incredible scholarship and the Vintage Aircraft Club,” adds Hudson.

Author: FTN Editor

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