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Liz Inwood 2017 taildragger scholarship winner

PUBLISHED: 15:50 06 September 2017 | UPDATED: 09:11 07 September 2017

Benjamin Pilgrim receives his award PHOTO: Paul Morton

Benjamin Pilgrim receives his award PHOTO: Paul Morton

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A Liverpool-based pilot has won the highly popular scholarship that helps young pilots learn to fly vintage and classic aircraft

Benjamin Pilgrim, 25, has won the highly popular Vintage Aircraft Club Liz Inwood Taildragger scholarship for 2017. The award is aimed at young pilots who wish to convert from typical flying club nosewheel aircraft to vintage and classic tailwheel types and offers five hours flying.

Benjamin currently flies from Liverpool airport where he is training to be a commercial pilot. He has demonstrated a clear passion for vintage machinery; he drives a 1969 Austin Healey Sprite and did his Liverpool University engineering dissertation on ‘Handling Qualities of Vintage Aircraft’.

As part of his course he created a 1912 Blackburn Monoplane simulator flight model, subsequently test flown by Shuttleworth Collection chief pilot Roger ‘Dodge’ Bailey.

“The VAC has been in existence for over 50 years, and currently has some 300 members who own and operate almost 200 classic and vintage aircraft,” said chairman Peter Wright.

“If our club is to thrive and survive, we recognise that not only must we attract new younger members, but must also hand on the skills required for younger people to operate the older type of conventional undercarriage aircraft – or taildragger as they are more commonly known.”

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