2019 Nick Davidson Memorial Flying Scholarship Recipient Announced


London Biggin Hill Airport has announced that Joshua Ali has been awarded the 2019 Nick Davidson Memorial Flying Scholarship (NDMFS).

The 22-year-old, from Lewisham in South London, receives a scholarship package worth £12,000, training to the international Private Pilot Licence (PPL) standard. The course includes 45 hours of flying with EFG Flying School, ground school instruction and examinations. Joshua will work at EFG Flying School’s operations desk as he completes his flight training; learning about aircraft maintenance and refuelling.

Captain Gary Merchant, chairman, NDMFS Trust, says:

“We couldn’t be prouder of Joshua. Our scholarships are not for the faint-hearted or the ill-prepared.  The NDMFS stamp of high attainment will continue to provide inspiration and leadership for young men and women seeking worthwhile careers on the flight deck or in the cockpit.”

Joshua’s ambition to become a pilot started from a young age, seeing him take part in flying days, gliding lessons and airfield visits. During his degree studies with the University of Reading, Joshua spent a year on detachment in Australia, flying regularly with Melbourne Gliding Club.

Joshua Ali at London Biggin Hill AirportJoshua Ali, says:

“I am so grateful to the NDMFS scheme and to London Biggin Hill Airport for this amazing opportunity. I can’t wait to learn modern aviation skills and work towards my goal of becoming a commercial airline pilot. It is like a dream come true.”

The Nick Davidson Memorial Flying Scholarship was set up in 2012 following the death of Airbus Captain and local pilot Nick Davidson, who worked as a flight instructor at London Biggin Hill Airport in the early 1990s. The scheme provides flying scholarships thanks to the support of Nick’s wife Alina and co-sponsors London Biggin Hill Airport, Shipping & Airlines, Adams Aviation Supply Company, Pooleys Flight Equipment and Falcon Flying Services, which owns the EFG Flying School.

Applications are now open for the 2020 Nick Davidson Memorial Flying Scholarship, to begin at London Biggin Hill Airport early next year. Applicants must be between the age of 16 and 26. Entries close on Friday 30 November.


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