RAeC Medals & Awards for 2021 - Presented 17th May 2022

24th May 2022

RAeC Britannia Trophy

Travis Ludlow

Aged 18, Travis Ludlow in July 2021 became the youngest-ever pilot to fly solo around the world. He spent 44 days completing the 24,900-mile (40,072km) journey and is a very worthy recipient of the Britannia Trophy.


RAeC Prince of Wales Cup

UK Paragliding Team

The Prince of Wales Cup is awarded to the British Paragliding team of Russell Ogden, Theo Warden , Juan Sebastian Ospina Restrepo, Martin Long, Idris Birch and Jocky Sanderson took the team Gold medal in the FAI Paragliding World Championships in Argentina in November 2021. The British team has always been a force to be reckoned with, but this is the first team world championships win for them and marks the culmination of much hard work and planning by the whole team.


RAeC Gold Medal

Russel Ogden

Russel Ogden is awarded a Gold Medal for his outstanding performance in winning the FAI Paragliding World Championships in Argentina in November 2021. Flying in difficult conditions more typical of British weather than the more dramatic alpine conditions, the competition was so close it was not decided until the final day when the two leaders were engaged in a nail-biting head-to-head battle that threatened to cause both men to land early and would certainly have downed lesser pilots.  Away from competition days Russ has been a patient mentor of BPRA (British Paragliding Racing Academy) pilots helping them to become competitive at the highest level.


RAeC Diploma

Francis Donaldson

For the past 30 years, Francis has headed the engineering resources for the Light Aircraft Association. In that time he has seen the amateur-built sector of aviation expand almost tenfold, with new construction techniques, electronics and equipage undreamt of by the builders of the early wood and fabric, VW-powered machines.

Francis stood down from his role as Chief Engineer at the end of 2021, but his encyclopaedic knowledge, backed by ‘real world’ engineering and flight-testing expertise will continue to benefit the recreational flying community for many years to come.


Geoffrey Weighell

Geoff migrated from hang gliders to microlights as the BMAA was created some 40 years ago. He became an instructor and formed Enstone Microlights flying school, teaching for more than twenty years. He progressed to Examiner and joined the BMAA Panel of Examiners, later becoming its chairman. He then joined the BMAA Council, again becoming Chairman before stepping down and shortly afterwards filling the post of Chief Executive in 2006, retiring 15 years later through poor health.

Geoff has played a very significant and major role in British microlighting and his influence has been felt by all who fly. He was highly regarded by those he dealt with, and he achieved many successes. These include: the creation of the NPPL licence and training syllabus, the introduction of the Single Seat de-regulated category, removal of the restriction on flight over built-up areas, the scrapping of outdated noise certifications, the self-declaration medical, the use of kit-built microlights for ab-initio flight training and, most recently, the creation of the 600kg microlight class.


RAeC Silver Medal

Jon Arnold

Jon began flying with the RAFGSA over thirty years ago, supporting numerous Association regional clubs as he has moved round the RAF during his career. He has been ‘Officer In Charge’ of the Bannerdown Gliding Club at RAF Keevil for over twenty years, leading the Club through numerous changes. Has also been a member of the RAFGSA Executive Council for over twenty years.

In parallel, Jon has been the Association’s most successful competition pilot, winning the Interservice Regional Competition numerous times. He has also flown at UK National level, competed at European Interservice level and whilst in Brazil, coached Brazilian Air Force glider pilots.

The Association has been hugely enriched by Jon’s contribution. His work has been integral to the delivery of the Association’s vision and mission whilst ensuring their aircraft Fleet is stable and sustainable for at least the next decade.


Rob Hughes

Since becoming a pilot, Rob Hughes has given 20 years voluntary service, not just to microlighting, but to light aviation in general. Rob first joined the BMAA Council in 2005 and his achievements include organising the Flying Show 5 times as well as the 2010 FAI European and 2016 FAI World microlight championships in the UK. Rob’s record of 17 years since he first joined the BMAA Council, with seven of them as Chairman is unmatched. The last two years have been particularly notable as he ably steered the BMAA through the Covid pandemic before taking over from Geoff Weighell as CEO in the Autumn of 2021.

Rob has always been keen to share his passion with others through commentating, organising events and even recording the building of his Escapade aeroplane via a website and then going on to form an owners’ club.


RAeC Bronze Medal

Tony World

Tony World has personally developed, sustained and extended the Portsmouth Naval Gliding Centre club’s reach to include gliding for all age groups despite a wide range of major challenges besetting and threatening the club’s very existence in recent years.

Tony’s personal gliding expertise, business acumen, leadership and sheer determination to succeed, have been key in ensuring that the club continued to function safely, despite being closed down after 69 years of existence at Lee-on-the-Solent.

Tony’s unstoppable energy and leadership; his personal commitment and determination; and investment of immense amounts of time and financial resources, have led the club through exceptionally difficult challenges to become viable, safe, vibrant and ready for the next stages of future investment at its new home at Middle Wallop.


Arno Glover

Arno glover joined the HCGB in 1991 and has selflessly given many hours of his time freely to the HCGB ever since.  Voluntary support such as this is invaluable.

Building on his willingness to volunteer, he also participated in several annual competitions as crewman/navigator. He has held many roles within the club serving several terms on the Board of Directors, assistant team manager for Team GB, FAI international judge and HCGB scorer which involved him writing the computer programme still in use today. He has travelled extensively in the UK and overseas to assist the HCGB in UK and International events. He has assisted with many training sessions helping set up courses and scoring for the crews.

Arno continues to support the HCGB from Canada, where is he now resident. He maintains his PPL (H), is a current member of the HCGB and contributes to the HCGB quarterly magazine, Rotor Torque.


Tony Palmer

Tony Palmer is awarded a Bronze Medal in recognition of his long-standing work with the LAA Southern Strut, as an LAA inspector and aircraft restorer, his hosting of fly-ins at his Palmers Farm air strip and for supporting Bristell kit builders and owners across the UK.

Tony is a strong advocate of flying for fun, either with the state-of-the art Bristell kit aircraft or vintage types. His most recent aircraft restorations have included a 1934 Klemm monoplane and the sole UK example of a Canadian-built 1940s DH82C Tiger Moth. He was recently described as “An ardent biplanist who is not averse to sheet aluminium and low wings” - and is a source of inspiration to flyers along the south coast.


David Cyster

David Cyster is awarded a Bronze Medal in recognition of five decades of inspirational Tiger Moth adventures.  He made an amazing Tiger Moth flight to Sydney in the 1970s, but also his flew a Rapide flight to Cape Town and back, all without gps. His continuing enthusiasm is unwavering and his encouragement to younger folk endless. He still flies displays regularly with the Tiger Nine display team and once you get him cranked up in the bar he is reported to be unstoppable.


Cathy Silk

Cathy is 82 in January and holds a current pilots licence and more to the point still actively flies her beloved Tiger Moth which she has owned since the mid 1980s from her farm strip. She was very much involved in the rebuild of it after suffering an engine failure, landing on a soft field, and overturning.

She has always supported the PFA/LAA events, Moth Club rallies and the Vintage Aircraft Club fly-ins. Over the years she has raised thousands of pounds for the Vintage Aircraft club through her efforts on merchandise sales as well as recruiting new members with her infectious sense of fun.

Cathy makes her farm buildings available to other local aircraft restorers and rebuilders and she is also very actively involved as part owner in the restoration to fly of a 1923 Caudron C68 biplane.


Cliff Lovell

Cliff Lovell has made a lifetimes contribution to the vintage and classic aeroplane scene and has exceeded all others in this country. Arguably, he invented our movement!

Cliff’s restorations scooped every award in their time, but perhaps not enough specific recognition has ever come to him personally. He initiated a step change in standards beyond the merely workmanlike.

After starting with Puss and Gipsy Moth rebuilds as personal projects, there was no stopping him with restorations and imports too many to mention, very often returning long unseen types to UK skies.  Not only the out and out vintage glamour jobs but Cubs, Jodels, and hitherto almost unseen American types, most notably Luscombes.

Many people are today flying relatively affordable classic Permit aeroplanes which owe their UK registry to Cliff Lovell.


Dave Wilshere

Dave has helped to establish sound roots for Jet Model Flying in the UK, helping to establish the Jet Modellers Association (JMA) and being it’s chairman for the last 17 years. Dave has been an Aeromodeller for over 40 years, being introduced to the sport of model flying by his father.

His passion is flying model jets and he has played a significant role in the development of this branch of the sport, from ducted fans through to modern turbine powered aircraft. He has been a prime-mover in the development of jet flying in the UK ever since the first ducted fan meeting at RAF Abingdon in 1981.

He has introduced countless numbers of modellers to turbine flying and helped with their model set up and maiden flights. He has been a great asset to the JMA, and model flying in general. Dave is awarded a Bronze Medal in recognition for his long standing and unselfish work.


Paul Bardoe

Although broadly known as ‘Mr Pylon’, Paul has been flying model aircraft for over a half century, having flown just about every type of model aircraft from Indoor Rubber powered models through to Gas Turbine models.

It is his love of Speed and his ability on the pylon racing course for which he is mostly known within the BMFA, but Paul has selflessly promoted aeromodelling all across the board, from teaching junior school classes through to preparing for the running World Championships on behalf of CIAM.

Paul has won numerous National championships in Radio Control pylon racing and has represented Great Britain on many occasions at F3D pylon racing World Championships. He is one of the most popular and charismatic characters on the international scene, widely respected for his fair play and sense of humour.


Nick Norman

Nick started flying with Cairngorm gliding club in 1979 whilst at University and in the 1980’s gained a Sponsored Helicopter Pilot Training Course with Bristow’s Helicopters supporting the oil industry out of Aberdeen, ending up as Chief Training Captain.

Nick soon started instructing on gliding courses in the Scottish Gliding Association’s ASH 25 high performance training glider and in due course generously offered free coaching to pilots in his own ASH25. He often flies in the Scottish Inter club League coaching in competition flying and supports initiatives to encourage young people into gliding.

Nick’s Commercial Aviation background has made him an excellent airspace representative for gliding in Scotland and he is also a very good engineer and inspector - nothing seems to be too difficult. He has developed and taught others to be inspectors.

Nick developed a “Black Box” that took the audio warning signal from the Flarm and turned it into headset audio. This represents a major improvement to flight safety and it has been distributed to other Scottish Clubs.

In short Nick has been a tremendous asset to gliding in Scotland for many years and his efforts have made a positive impact on gliding throughout the UK. Nick is a worthy recipient of a Bronze Medal


Liz Sparrow

Liz Sparrow is a very experienced glider pilot and instructor and is a highly motivated advocate and supporter of women in gliding.  She has been the world’s top-ranked female glider pilot in the world according to the International Gliding Commission ranking list!

Working with others, in 2005 Liz developed and launched the ‘Women Gliding’ initiative, which today provides guidance and support to aspiring and already experienced women glider pilots.

Despite being very busy professionally, as a volunteer club instructor and coach, and as a competitor, Liz rose to the challenge of becoming a volunteer DfT GA champion and worked hard during her 12 months in post to successfully reach out to a large number of potential influencers across aviation promoting the cause of women and girls in aviation.

The UK is hosting the Women’s World Gliding Championship in August 2022. You will not be surprised to hear that Liz not only wrote the winning bid to host the competition. She has taken on the role of arranging and directing the competition and is leading several initiatives that aim to ensure that there is a legacy that continues to deliver long after the competition has ended.

Liz is highly deserving recipient of a Bronze Medal.


Julie Churchill

With tireless support from airfield operator Julie Churchill at Peterborough Conington, the BAeA’s National Aerobatic Championships for Sports and Intermediate pilots have benefitted enormously from more than two decades of continuous encouragement to develop an enviable reputation at this delightfully run airfield.

Following early positive discussions with Julie an inaugural one-day competition in 1997 proved highly successful, no less than 89 aerobatic sequences being flown. Since then this prestigious annual gathering of BAeA’s aspiring junior category pilots has been able to make great use of the stable and welcoming ambience of this well managed small airfield.

Twenty-four consecutive top-quality competitions and thousands of aerobatic sequences later Conington airfield remains the ideal location for this key event in the aerobatic calendar, continuing the Association’s excellent relationship with host Julie and this ‘safe haven’ that is well known by visiting pilots for its cordial staff and excellent catering.

Julie is awarded a Bronze Medal in recognition of her solid support of British Aerobatics through many years of challenging but enormously rewarding encounters.


RAeC Certificate of Merit


Paul Fraser-Bennison, Chris Thompson and the LAA Rally A/G Radio Team

The LAA Rally is Britain’s largest fly in event, attracting over 700 aircraft over its three days. This year, in the recovery from Covid, the Rally faced a potential crisis when the host airfield at Sywell proved unable to offer an appropriate air traffic control service.

Within just six weeks, LAA members Paul Fraser-Bennison and Chris Thompson put together from scratch a team of appropriately experienced A/G radio staff, convinced the CAA that they could provide a service, then safely supported the over 1,500 aircraft movements at the 2021 Rally.


Ian Scarborough

Ian has been Chief Marshall for the 3Rs for as long as they can remember. As well as assisting the Handicapper and Clerk of the Course to design a safe racing course he sets out the turning points at the beginning of the weekend and brings them in at the end.

Whilst the pilots fly around with every lever forward, Ian gets up at the crack of dawn and drives miles and miles to find that prefect spot to erect his fluorescent tent turning points. Racers will complain that they are invisible until you are on top of them - hidden behind a hawthorn hedge or large oak tree - Ian is always happy for a pilot to help in his endeavours. He has been a successful navigator for many pilots, who seek his insider knowledge of the turning point locations!

Ian never complains and is present at every race weekend quietly beavering away in the background. Volunteer sporting organisations such the 3Rs rely on the dedication and goodwill of members of Ians ilk, and Ians contribution is recognised with a Certificate of Merit.



Courtney and Malcolm Chambers

Courtney Chambers and his father Malcolm have both come to flying fairly late in life. Courtney is now in his fifties and Malcolm is a sprightly eighty! They are hardworking farmers (both of them!) and hauliers with several hundred acres of arable land just south of Northampton, a fair chunk of which they have given over to establish a fine airstrip

Courtney and Malcolm love to welcome other people of a like mind to their home strip - from helicopters through aeroplanes to SSDRs, paramotors, gliders and even recently a powered airship(!). They love to chew the fat endlessly about all things that fly and to that end they have established whats fast becoming the most popular fly-in venue in the area.

Courtney has decided this year to apply for the New Farm airstrip to become an authorised airfield and has applied to the local planning authority for permanent planning permission.  With so many airfields disappearing, its nice to see a new one established.


Mike Waldron

Mike Waldron has been a long-time member of the Light Aircraft Association. In 1978 he built a 3/4 scale replica of a WWI SE5A fighter plane which first flew in 1996. He generously made the aircraft available to a number of display qualified pilots to allow it to take part in the many displays commemorating the centenary of that war. In the meantime, he has taken on a second project to build from plans a Pietenpol Air Camper Aircraft which is now close to completion.

In 1999 he moved to Gloucestershire and joined the Gloster Strut, the local branch of the Light Aircraft Association, and shortly thereafter volunteered to arrange its monthly programme of speakers and events.

In 2018 he took over the chairmanship of the Strut but retaining his original work as programme and visits organiser, adding to it the organisation of fly-ins and BBQs at which he is invariably both the quartermaster and chef. Not surprisingly the Strut has flourished under his leadership.


Fiona Macaskill

Fiona had a highly distinguished record in the field of paragliding. She represented Britain on six occasions, held four women’s world speed records and won the British Women’s Accuracy Championship. In 2013 she took up fixed wing flying. In short order she attained her PPL, a night rating, her Mountain Flying Altiport ticket and the 3Rs Air Racing Endorsement.

In air racing she competed as handling pilot in the gruelling Botswana Race for Rhinos, coming over the line about half way up the international field, a very creditable result for a first timer in a field of largely seasoned veterans. She also set the FAI Le Touquet to Annecy world speed record for the 500-1000kg category in 2017.

With her husband she has competed in the Dawn to Dusk Challenge as handling pilot on three occasions, winning at least one prize in each and winning the top prize twice.

In the southern hemisphere she has completed several epic flights in both New Zealand and Australia. Her four trips in Australia covering the whole country totalled something over 20,000nm, much of it over barren terrain.

In the UK she established a Guinness world record for landing at 71 airfields in 12 hours. In this and in many of her previous endeavours she has raised substantial sums of money for charity. She has lectured to over 40 LAA Struts and Community groups, helping to inspire future generations of pilots, especially of course women.


Derek Grimshaw

Derek always wanted to fly and, having given hang gliding a go, he turned to the much more sociable flying sport, hot air ballooning. He had his first balloon flight in 1975 from the Leyland festival and that was the start of his long life in ballooning. 

After a chance encounter with a couple of balloon pilots he joined the local BBAC region, bought his first balloon in 1985 and started to learn to fly and gained his PPL in1987 and CPL in 1989 and subsequently set up one of the longest running balloon ride operations in the country. He became a BBAC approved instructor in 1992 and is still flying balloons and teaching students to fly at the age of 79.

Derek has also been heavily involved in the North West Region of the BBAC acting as chairman, meet organiser and treasurer over a number of years. On the national side of ballooning, he held the role of BBAC treasurer from 1993 to 2001. He also set up and organised the BBAC ground crew training scheme.

Derek is kind, considerate and knowledgeable person and has given a great deal back to ballooning, a contribution which is recognised with a Certificate of Merit.


Glenn Stockton

Glenn Stockton has been a driving force in the field of paragliding since the 70’s having been involved in widening participation within the sport, particularly through his connections with scouting.  He has striven to provide accessible flying to individuals who may otherwise be excluded due to physical impairments. As well as showing decades of commitment to improving the sport of paragliding and running the Bollington Paragliding Club that has provided access to tow and hill environment training to countless people.

Glenn Stockton started flying with the Force Ten Scout club in 1973 as a teenager and has continued the association with both paragliding and the scouts, introducing generations of young people to parascending.

Glenn regularly competed in accuracy competitions during the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s to a high standard and has been heavily involved in passing on this expertise by coaching BPC members and others in the techniques, or as some would say ‘dark arts’ of accuracy flying.

In addition to his involvement with towed paragliding, Glenn is a passionate hill flyer and is an active member of the wider paragliding community.  He is regularly seen flying the hills around North Wales and the North West of England, combined with frequent overseas flying trips to Europe and beyond. Glenn has been a regular competitor for a number of years in the Lakes charity classic, an annual competition run by the Cumbria Soaring Club.

Glenn’s decades of commitment to paragliding and hang gliding, and in particular his work in widening the accessibility of the sport and training generations of tow and hill pilots is recognised with a Certificate of Merit.


Jamie Cole

Jamie has worked hard to re-align the image of the BMFA within the Radio Control Drone Racing community. He is well known across the Drone Racing community and he is considered to be the best Race Director in Drone Racing.

He not only runs local competitions but also many National-Level races on behalf of the British Drone Racing Association (BDRA).  He has invested a good deal of his own time, effort and considerable amount of money to make the UK drone racing scene the potential World Champion producing organisation it is today.

Jamie’s mission control trailer is a testament to modern technology, livestreaming races to the internet whilst simultaneously tracking each drone in the race and monitoring its data for in and post-race analysis.


Richard Pidduck

Richard has been secretary of the Caterham and District Model Flying Club for 26 years, processing membership applications, being instrumental in field maintenance and always attending BMFA area meetings.

His attention to detail and record keeping is beyond question. He brings a sense of humour, easy going manner, methodical approach and accuracy to his dealings with members, committee meetings and AGM’s. He is a tireless supporter and advocate of both the club and the BMFA, travelling considerable distances to attend all area meetings.

Since 2008 Richard has been part of the British Nationals Fun Fly team, made up of CDMFC members and has been present at all but one event as a judge and scorer in all Barkston Heath weathers. He also attends other Fun Fly events on behalf of the British Fun Fly Association, at venues such as Buckminster and Old Warden. Richard’s judging is always fair, honest and adheres to the spirit of Fun Fly putting new competitors at ease.


Norton Griffiths Challenge Trophy

Amy Whitewick and Mervyn White

During May 2021, Pilot Amy and Co-Pilot Mervyn (both LAA members) took to the skies in a 1972 Cessna 150 Aerobat to fly an incredible piece of aviation art, depicting a portrait of early aviator John Stringfellow.

They used GPS which traced Johns outline, and flew the image in three, separate flights, which when joined together, revealed the astonishing image. It is believed to be the first ever portrait drawn by an aircraft in aviation history, the first GPS illustration to be drawn in three separate flights, and the most complex GPS image ever drawn by air. They flew over five-and-a-half hours throughout the course of the day under gruelling and intense concentration, with over 226 unique headings.


The President’s Breitling Trophy

The Junior British Gliding Team

Finn Sleigh, Tom Pavis, Henry Inigo-Jones and Toby Freeland are the four members of the British Junior Gliding Team who through their ongoing performance at National and International competition were selected for the Junior European Gliding Championships held in Lithuania during 2021.

In the 12 months leading up to this competition, the team members developed their own training and sponsorship strategy that they fine tuned and delivered whilst holding down busy careers or were in further education. At the same time, they worked hard to ensure that their gliders, which unlike in several other national teams are self-funded, were 100% race ready and therefore performing at their best.

The competition, which included two racing classes, was hard fought in very challenging soaring conditions over terrain very different to that experienced in the UK. After the two-week competition, Finn Sleigh took Gold medal in the Club Class, and Tom Pavis took Silver medal and Henry Inigo-Jones took Bronze medal in the Standard Class. With the fourth team member, Toby Freeland, who unfortunately just missed a podium position, the British Team took the overall competition Team Cup.

For their meritorious performance at the 2021 Junior European Gliding Championships, the Junior British Gliding Team are awarded the President’s Breitling Trophy.


The Old & Bold Trophy

Ted Barrett

Ted Barrett is 100 years old, has had a PPL since 1955 and passed his microlight GST at the age of 93. He still drives to and flies frequently from Hunsdon and Andrewfield airfields and is rated by the CFI at Hundon as an excellent pilot.

Ted is extremely modest and a true gentleman. His airmanship is superb, matched only by his enthusiasm. Not only is Ted still an active pilot, he also still holds licenses as an aircraft engineer and is a long-standing LAA Inspector. Ted learnt his trade as an RAF apprentice working on biplanes. He served in WW2 based in Karachi, overhauling and repairing propellers. After Demob he moved to Stansted and worked for Freddie Laker on the Berlin Airlift aircraft. Somewhere along the way he got to know general aviation and worked on Austers etc when he was not working on 707’s and DC8 jets for Aviation Traders.

In 2021, Ted had a 100th birthday party at his flying club and after blowing candles out climbed in a C42 for a circuit. Whenever there is a YES young peoples’ event locally, Ted is there, enthusiastically teaching youngsters about aviation.


The Nexus Trophy

Steve Slater

In addition to his work as CEO of the Light Aircraft Association, Steve has been a highly regarded columnist for two of the UK’s leading aviation magazines for more than a decade; Aeroplane Monthly and Pilot. This involves researching and writing articles on two different subjects every month.

His column in Aeroplane; Hangar Talk, is a monthly comment on the world of historic aviation, whether it be warbird restorations, historic jets or airshows. Open Cockpit in Pilot magazine takes current subjects and looks at historical angles, with everything from aviation ghost stories, flying film music, or even Victorian ballooning as recent themes.

Of particular note was an article in Pilot which listed the aviation luminaries including A V Roe and Sidney Camm, who had cut their teeth on model aircraft, linked to a call to action on the then CAA proposals on licensing model aircraft flying.

In each case Stephen’s work is carefully researched and a pleasure to read, often leading to the comment, “never knew that”.  Steve is awarded the Nexus Trophy in recognition of his work as an aviation writer.


The RAeC Chairman’s Trophy

Mike Smith

Mike Smith has been at the forefront of helicopter flight in the United Kingdom from when he joined The Royal Navy as a boy in the early 1950s after breaking into the Admiralty, knocking on the door of the Director for Naval Recruiting and asking for a job. He escaped his destiny of a career in law, a reserved occupation at the time. The Royal Navy had just invented helicopter flying and required pilots, this was enough to switch Smiths ambition from jets to rotary. He flew extensively in the military before becoming a civilian pilot and instructor. He joined the Helicopter Club of Great Britain in 1967 as member number six. He has competed at four FAI World Helicopter Championships representing Great Britain. He started his own business in the 1980s and went on to run one of the most successful helicopter companies of all time. Aside of flight training he was also selling 15% of the worldwide output from Robinson Helicopters.

Having amassed a modest 25,000 hours and more than half a century in helicopters and teaching several generations of people to fly a helicopter, the prominence of Mike’s role in the history of helicopter flight in the United Kingdom is unparalleled and unlikely to be equalled and is being marked with the inaugural presentation of The Chairman’s Trophy.


RAeC Companionships

George Farha

George Farha is awarded Companionship of the RAeC.  George is a great Philanthropist and a significant donor to the RAeC Trust which helps support the development of young aviators through the Trust’s bursary scheme.

Andrew Brownsword

Andrew Brownsword is awarded Companionship of the RAeC.  Andrew is head of the Andrew Brownsword Foundation and has made significant donations to the RAeC Trust to support the development of young aviators through the Trust’s bursary scheme.


The Ann Welch Memorial Award

Mike Chilvers

Mike Chilvers’ first taste of flight was in the late 90s, when his family purchased him a flight at a local flying club. He was instantly hooked, but realised he preferred experiencing flight when exposed directly to the elements rather than from behind a cockpit screen. A chance encounter with a powered paraglider (paramotor) led to a course of lessons.

Mike’s natural talent as a paramotor pilot was evident. He entered the competitive side of paramotoring, gaining considerable experience and winning many accolades along the way. He was awarded the “Best Newcomer” in the 2006 British Paramotor Nationals and the same year was part of the British Team competing in the European Paramotor Championships, where the team won a Bronze Medal.

The following year, Mike competed in the World Paramotor Championships in China, winning an individual task and helping to secure a Silver Medal for the British Team. In 2010, he switched his activity in competitions to the role of Director, initially directing tasks before taking on the demanding position of Competition Director.

In 2016 he was appointed Competition Director for the FAI World Paramotor Championships at Popham Airfield. Around this time Mike found himself gravitating towards teaching others to fly. A natural communicator, Mike became known for his considered approach to individuals’ needs, enabling people of all ages to take to the air safely under his tutelage. Mike applied to convert to the BHPA teaching system five years ago, and as a licensed BHPA Senior Instructor he delivers a consistent high standard of training at his paramotor school based at Winglands Airfield, near Spalding, Lincolnshire.     


The Jim Crocker Sword

Angela and Dave Hickling

The Jim Crocker Sword is an award recognising outstanding contributions to the sport of Skydiving. The 2022 recipients are David & Angela Hickling.

David and Angela Hickling have owned and operated British Parachute Schools at Langar Airfield, Nottinghamshire since 1980.

The parachute centre has gone from a Cessna 206 operation to a three Cessna Caravan operation. The centre has hosted the British Skydiving National Championships on numerous occasions. They have also hosted Instructor Courses almost every year since the 1980s.

David and Angela have made an outstanding and significant contribution to the sport and are thoroughly deserving of this recognition.


FAI Awards for Presentation

Matthew Bolshaw MBE – FAI Paul Tissandier Diploma

Matthew Bolshaw is well known and widely respected within the UK aviation community, having established a highly regarded background in the aviation insurance market as well as being an accomplished pilot of fixed wing aircraft and helicopters.

Matthew works proactively in his own time to promote the needs and interests of the General Aviation (GA) sector, voluntarily dedicating his time as the Public Enquiry Point for the UK’s largest All-Party Parliamentary Group, the General Aviation APPG or GA APPG and to the Royal Aero Club which represents some 70,000 sporting and recreational aviators in the UK.  

As Chairman of the RAeC Medals & Awards Committee, he has played a key role for the Club in ensuring fair recognition of others (usually volunteers) involved in all aspects of sporting and recreational aviation in the UK.

Matthews long term voluntary commitment was recognised with the Award of a FAI Paul Tissandier Diploma.


Matthew Hoyland – FAI Alphonse Penaud Aeromodelling Diploma

Matthew has achieved a remarkable feat of being three-times consecutive title holder as British National Champion between 2014 and 2019.

Matthew is the top F3A aerobatic pilot in the United Kingdom. He has been a member of the GBR F3A team on seven occasions winning the GBR Team Selection competition league in each case. Matthew also has an outstanding record in F3A & F3P promotion and organisation including the British National Championships and the UK leg of the F3A World Cup series.


Alan Cassidy MBE – FAI Leon Biancotto Aerobatics Diploma

For nearly thirty years Alan Cassidy has been instructing aerobatics, competing internationally and organising and leading the sport in the UK. He ranks amongst the world’s most prolific aerobatic instructors, with over 5,000 instructional hours in Pitts Specials alone. His book, Better Aerobatics, is considered the model reference text for new aerobatic pilots.

In his own right Alan has been British Unlimited champion four times and Advanced champion three times. He has competed in ten World Championships. He served as Chairman of the British Aerobatic Association for ten years and authored the UK’s AOPA aerobatic syllabus, to date the only recognised UK aerobatic qualification. He is a fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society and vice-president of honour of the International Aerobatic Commission. In 2010 he was awarded an MBE in recognition for his services to aerobatics and to charity.


David Monks – FAI Gold Rotorcraft Medal

David Monks has been involved in rotorcraft since 1995 when he learned to fly. Since then he has been involved in rotorcraft on my many levels - pilot, FAI competition pilot, FAI medal winner, FAI world record holder, event organiser, national team manager, national champion, Chairman of the Helicopter Club of Great Britain and current Chairman of The Royal Aero Club of the United Kingdom and President of the FAI.

As well as flying, David has served FAI CIG for over thirteen years as UK delegate and chairman of the rules committee and secretary. David’s most recent project has been to compile a set of manuals for CIG which will ensure fairness for competitors at all future events and promote the integrity of the sport.

Back to the main news page

Latest News


The latest edition of the RAeC Newsletter for Summer 2022 is now available to view HERE

Latest Events