Monday 22 July 2024
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Pictures: IASTI Newark students take flight from Tollerton Airport

The UK’s first International Air and Space Training Institute (IASTI) Newark has leased its own aircraft so aspiring pilots can take to the skies.

Air experience flights are to take place every Friday so all learners can gain three hours of flight time during the first year of their course.

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Students will be taking off in the leased Piper Archer aircraft from Nottingham Aerodrome in Tollerton alongside Captains Chris and Callum Hives, both qualified commercial pilots and flying instructors.

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Located in Newark-on-Trent, IASTI Newark is the UK’s first International Air and Space Training Institute. IASTI students learn from aviation and aerospace industry experts with years of flying experience and get hands-on experience as they learn the skills needed to become pilots, engineers or flight dispatchers, leading to Level 3 Diplomas in Aviation Operations or Aircraft Maintenance.

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Learners from the pilot pathway, Tim Gosling and Lewis Chesman, were the first to embark on the adventure last Friday and they enjoyed every minute of this extraordinary experience.

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“It was amazing,” said Tim. “One of the best bits was seeing the views as it was such a nice day!

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“During the first flight we flew around Newark and headed towards Lincoln before turning back and after lunch we were flying near Mansfield.


“I didn’t imagine we’d be flying so soon on the course!”

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Lewis was equally as enthusiastic about the opportunity. He said: “It was great fun. Chris took us up to 3,000 ft and we were orbiting above the clouds.


“We had four hours of flying in total that day; two hours each and taking it in turns to be in the cockpit.


“The first time we went up, we had the chance to get used to the feel of flying. After lunch we learned more about the effects of the controls and what they do. It’s details like that, that you can take away and apply when you fly next time.”


They are both looking forward to flying again in two months’ time.


Tim and Lewis offered the following advice to school leavers who are thinking of applying to join IASTI Newark in September:


“Go for it! If you have a dream to fly, then this is the best option so just go for it!”


Captain Hives said: “It was an absolute pleasure flying alongside Tim and Lewis who had both prepared themselves well for the event.


“By introducing IASTI students to the airborne environment, real context can be added to their classroom-based aviation studies. The opportunities afforded by IASTI are incredible and I look forward to more time in the air with the cadre of future pilots and engineers”


IASTI Newark is one of nine priority projects developed by Newark Towns Fund Board and is funded through the Government’s Towns Fund initiative.


The programme enables students to learn from aviation professionals as they develop the skills needed to become pilots, engineers, or flight dispatchers, leading to Level 3 Diplomas in Aviation Operations or Aircraft Maintenance.


Discover more of the incredible opportunities at IASTI Newark at the next Open Day at Newark College on Wednesday 23rd February. Register to attend here.

Apply for courses starting this September here.


For more information about IAST Newark, visit

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