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From a very young age I gazed at the skies with amazement at how these vehicles seemingly floated amongst the clouds. And it wasn’t long before I had my chance to board an airliner to Florida on a British Airways 747-200 at the age of 6 years old.

In 1988 having passengers on the flight deck was quite common practice, and I was in awe at seeing the northern lights on display through the flight deck windscreen. Already fascinated by how this giant metal bird took to the skies in the first place I developed my love for aviation.

A handful of trips to the viewing area at Cardiff Airport was much appreciated as a child, watching light aircraft and airliners come in and out of the airport amongst the plane spotters, armed with their long zoom lenses and air band scanners. Knowing I could learn to fly at 14 years old, go solo at 16 and have my licence issued by the CAA at 17 only encouraged me to save my pocket money.

But flying certainly isn’t cheap, and no matter how hard I saved the £4,500 total cost of getting a PPL (in 1992) it seemed like a long way away, especially when I started spending my money on nitro powered radio control model aircraft.