Boy becomes Britain’s youngest solo pilot after just turning 16

Boy becomes Britain’s youngest solo pilot after earning wings on his 16th birthday (before he can drive a car!)

  •  Oliver Jarrett, 16, has passed his pilots test within two hours of his birthday
  •  The newly turned 16 year old is confident he is officially Britain’s youngest pilot
  •  The brave teenager earned his wings over the skies of Basingstoke, Hampshire

Oliver Jarrett, from Kings Worthy near Winchester has become Britain’s youngest licensed pilot, earning his wings on his 16th birthday. 

Not only is Oliver the youngest pilot in the countries history, but he will be joining the airways before he’s even learn to drive.

Oliver, who dreams of becoming a commercial pilot, flew an Ikarus C42 just two hours after turning 16.

Oliver earned his wings in a Ikarus C42 propeller plane only two hours after officially turning 16 years old 

The plucky 16 year old said: ‘I felt more comfortable when I was up on my own than when it was me and the instructor’.

He passed his test at Popham Airfield, near Basingstoke, Hampshire. His examiner thought he was capable of passing before he turned 16, however trainee pilots are not allowed to fly solo until they reach the age.

Oliver has been taking lessons with Airbourne Aviation since 2017 and was watched on by his proud parents Ian, 50, Joan, 49, and brother Connor, 11.

Delighted, Oliver said: ‘I was born at midday, and I flew my test at 2pm that same day. I’m not sure how it’s officially measured but I’m confident I’m the youngest solo pilot.’

Standing tall: Oliver’s instructor, Ben Hilton (left) was convinced he could have passed earlier but under 16’s aren’t allowed to attempt the test, pictured here with head instructor Mac Smith (right)  

The sky’s the limit: Oliver took to the skies over Basingstoke with ease, feeling more at home flying solo than with an instructor

‘There has always been an element of nerves when I fly, but I felt more comfortable and relaxed when I was up on my own than when it was me and the instructor.

Following his success, Oliver has now been authorised by the Microlight Aircraft Association to fly unaccompanied near Popham Airfield as he prepares to take his full test, which he plans to have passed within weeks of his 17th birthday.

Once he has passes that, he plans to fly solo to another airfield in Britain.

His dream job is to be a commercial pilot, flying passenger aircraft, but training can cost up to £120,000, so Oliver is also setting his sights on becoming an instructor for now. 

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