High flyer: Chadwell Heath teenager to achieve lifetime ambition

A 19-year-old is reaching for the sky after being accepted to study as a trainee pilot.

Ryan Thomson says he has wanted to be a pilot since he was a little boy and went inside a cockpit for the first time.

His parents are now working out how they can help finance the course and support their son in achieving his lifetime ambition.

Ryan, of Chadwell Heath, said: “I’ve wanted to be a pilot since I was little – when I was seven years old I had the chance to sit in a cockpit and was just amazed by the experience.”

He has been accepted on a two-year intensive pilot training course at CTC Wings in Southampton. On completion he will be qualified to fly both commercial and private jets.

“I’m the first ever person in my family to want to become a pilot,” he said. “My mum is nervous about it but they are all so supportive with it and are trying to find a way to finance it any way they can.”

The aviation training course costs up to �100,000. To get on to the course Ryan had to undertake maths and science as well as health and fitness tests before being interviewed.

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To help prepare him for the gruelling selection process he studied sports at Redbridge College, Barley Lane, Little Heath.

“My tutors at the college helped me to look in to the different paths for becoming a pilot and helped me choose the right one for me,” he said. “They have helped me a lot.”

Ryan has already gained some flight experience but knows how much commitment following his dream will take.

“I never knew how to make my dream reality, but now that I know the path to take I’m determined to get there,” he added.