Heritage / Vintage Aviation

Aircraft such as Spitfires, Tiger Moths, Stearman, Westland Wasp, Harvard, Chipmunk, DC3 and ex-military fast jets which are no longer in active service, and have been preserved beyond their normal life, are often referred to as heritage or vintage.

These aircraft may be in museums or collections, or still be flown with their owners maintaining the aircraft to an ‘airworthy’ standard. 

Where does it happen?

All over the country at small and large airports. A quick search online for vintage experience flights will help you find the operation closest to you.

How can you get involved?

Companies operating vintage / heritage aviation are often looking for volunteers to help as ‘Ground Crew’. This task involves aspects such as briefing the passenger, refuelling, and cleaning aircraft, and moving them in and out of hangars.

There is the potential to become a pilot in one of these vintage aircraft – each operation will have its own parameters for what qualifications you might need from minimum flight hours to ratings and experience on the type of aircraft.

Where can you go with this career?

Most pilots who are lucky enough to fly vintage / heritage aircraft see it as a great honour. Generally, they will either be flying passengers for an experience flight or displaying the aircraft at air shows.

Good to know…

Getting into flying vintage / heritage aircraft is very competitive. Many pilots want the opportunity to fly these amazing old machines and lots of ex-military pilots will have experience too, it’s often a case of being in the right place at the right time, so getting involved in volunteering will help.