Teenager in call for pilot grant scheme

By Rob George 13/04 Updated: 24/04 14:18

Buy photos » Josh Bough, who hopes his dreams of becoming a pilot won’t be grounded. Picture by Nick Hands 1312049NHR Order this picture at www.buyphotos247.com.

A DROITWICH teenager has called on the Government to help him reach for the skies and achieve his dream of becoming an airline pilot.

Josh Bough, a Year 13 student at Droitwich Spa High School and Sixth Form Centre, has won a place on an Integrated Airlines Course run by the Pilot Training College in Florida.

The high-flying 17-year-old is a keen member of the air cadets and hoped to become a pilot in the RAF but saw his dream dashed as the force has suspended all recruitment.

But Josh has not been deterred and has battled his way through a rigorous selection process to secure his place on one of the most prestigious courses there is.

After a year in Florida, he will decamp to Ireland for three months to do his bad weather training before, at the tender age of 19, being put behind the controls of a jet.

Josh could then be at the helm of a plane taking Brits on their summer holidays every year.

However, to complete the course and see his career take-off, the teenager needs to pay £82,000, a sum which is currenlty

out of his reach due to a lack of funding support for courses of this type.

He said: “The problem is there are no grants available for this kind of course, which seems daft to me.

“I have friends that will go off to university who can borrow £40,000 or £50,000 with little or no guarantee of a job at the end of their studies.

“I am virtually guaranteed a job on a starting salary two or three times that of a ‘normal’ graduate and yet the Government does not have a scheme in place to support me.”

The enterprising teenager has taken his concerns to the highest level and written to Droitwich’s MP Peter Luff to press for a solution to help him secure his dream career.

In reply, Mr Luff said: “I can think of no arguments against the points you raised so I have referred it on to the government minister responsible for higher education asking for his observations.”

Josh said he was glad Mr Luff had taken his approach so seriously and added: “This is a great opportunity and there is no way my family can afford to pay for me. I am looking forward to hearing the minister’s reply.”

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