Air Cadet Rebecca, 16, is a real high-flier

Rebecca Neale
Rebecca Neale
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AT 16, Rebecca Neale is not yet old enough to drive a car on the road.

But that has not stopped her taking the wheel of an aircraft.

Rebecca, an air cadet from Bubwith, near Selby, has become one of the youngest pilots in the UK having completed her first solo flight four weeks after her 16th birthday.

She took the controls of the single-engine Cessna 150, taking off and landing from the historic Breighton Airfield, East Yorkshire, wartime home to 78 squadron.

Rebecca had been ready to solo for almost a month but she had to wait until she turned 16, the legal limit.

On the week of her birthday weather conditions were too windy. However, at her last flying lesson the conditions proved ideal and she was able to successfully achieve her solo. The solo flight has earned Rebecca her silver wings in the Air Cadets.

Her father David said: “Both I and my wife Linda are very proud of our daughter.”

Rebecca added: “I didn’t even think about getting my wings. I just love flying, and today was no different really. I always get nervous before a lesson, but as soon as I have control of the aircraft I forget the fact I feel nervous and just enjoy myself.”

Rebecca has been a cadet at 2357 (Goole) Squadron since the age of 14. The squadron’s commanding officer, Squadron Leader Adrian Owen, said: “We’re very proud of Rebecca who is a terrific cadet and has fully enjoyed everything the cadets has to offer.”

Rebecca hopes to join the RAF and be selected for pilot training.