Collaborating to inspire the next generation of pilots

Ascent’s instructors come from a wide range of backgrounds, bringing with them a raft of experiences that our trainees find invaluable.

Pat Voigt (PV) is an EFT QFI based at RAF Barkston Heath and a former RAF fast jet and commercial pilot. He joined Ascent in September 2022, and along with his flying expertise, his involvement with one of the historic City of London Companies, the Honourable Company of Air Pilots (known as the Air Pilots) has brought an added dimension to his work with our future pilots and aircrew.

The Air Pilots represents and strives to protect the interests and welfare of pilots across the globe, through operational training and flight safety matters. With more than 2,000 members throughout the UK, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand and North American regions, it also provides scholarships, mentoring, networking and advice, to encourage and assist those from any background who wish to become pilots.

The highest achievements in the industry are promoted by the Air Pilots through the internationally recognised Trophies and Awards programme, which is celebrated in the Guild Hall each autumn.

The membership body contains a wealth of knowledge, spanning aspiring pilots, general aviation, military and commercial and includes some who may not have flown an aircraft, such as drone pilots.

“There is a great synergy between the aims and goals of both the Air Pilots and Ascent,” says PV. “The shared philosophy encompassing the importance of encouraging youngsters and bringing forward the next generation of air crew is paramount. This is initially achieved by involving them through flying and gliding scholarships and in so doing aims to dispel any perceived elitism.

“The future of aviation rests with young aspiring pilots and we aim for Air Pilots membership to be as inclusive and diverse as possible, to ensure the continuity and future of our outstanding industry.”

Photos: 1. PV and Air Pilots members, incl The Master Captain Jonathon P Legat, at Gloucester Airport. 2. PV and Harrier GR7 2001. 3. PV and 777 GE90 engine 2015