The sky’s the limit for Devizes scholar of the year

This Is Wiltshire: Scholar of the year Ben Cockrem is presented with his propeller trophy by the owner of Cotswold Airport, Ronan Harvey Scholar of the year Ben Cockrem is presented with his propeller trophy by the owner of Cotswold Airport, Ronan Harvey

Air cadet Ben Cockrem has set his sights set on a career in the RAF after winning a coveted award.

Ben, 16, of Massey Road, Devizes, who is in the lower sixth at St John’s School, Marlborough, was among ten chosen from 100 hopefuls who applied for a scholarship offered by Cotswold Airport in Cirencester.

The eight-day course enabled the youngsters to experience flying in fixed wing aircraft, helicopters, microlights and aerobatic planes.

Ben said: “Most of the flying was done by us – including the aerobatics – and we all logged a couple of hours in the pilot log books we were given.

“We also travelled to RAF Brize Norton, where I landed a C130 in the simulator. I was very pleased I managed a perfect three-point landing.

“We were shown round the control tower at Gloucestershire Airport.”

It got even better for Ben. At the end of the course there was a presentation ceremony and Ben was presented with the propeller trophy given to the scholar of the year.

Ben said: “I couldn’t believe it when they called out my name. I had just had the best time but this was the icing on the cake.”

Now Ben, who is a member of the Devizes squadron of the Air Cadets, is looking to the future.

He said: “I would like a career in aviation, either commercial aircraft or the RAF. It is very expensive training for commercial flight so I might try for the RAF.”

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