William Tysterman takes to the skies in a light aircraft when he's not working as a planning project officer at South Cambridgeshire District Council.
How did you get into aviation?
My interest in aviation started when I was much younger and went on holiday with my parents: flying was one of the most exciting parts of the holiday - the feeling of take-off, hearing the sound of the engines reaching full throttle, then landing and even experiencing turbulence was so exciting. I knew I should pursue this outside interest.
What does it involve?
Currently I have a few lessons in a Cessna 152 and aim to work towards my private pilot's license. I’m getting a feel for all the instruments, how the aircraft flies and learning how to take off and land safely. I'll then learn navigation, how to communicate with air traffic control and deal with emergencies such as an aircraft stalling.
Why do you do it?
I'm learning to fly because it's such a great feeling and the views are amazing. Being able to fly where I want, overcoming the challenges of flying and always aiming for that perfect landing are very rewarding.
What’s the toughest thing about it?
Not everything goes right all the time. Up in the air there are so many things you have to think about such as flying, weather conditions, navigation, other nearby aircraft, air traffic control, all of which can become overwhelming.
What’s the most rewarding thing about it?
Powering up to full throttle, accelerating down the runway and the freedom you have up in the air are fantastic. The flip side is pulling off a perfect landing and there is no greater feeling than when you're up in the air in perfect weather conditions enjoying fantastic views.
Are there any similarities between your day job and flying aircraft?
Aviation skills have a common link with planning. Teamwork, for example, with someone else in the cockpit is vital. Clear communication to make sure everything goes smoothly is crucial to both disciplines, while being able to prioritise tasks, take responsibility and keep calm under pressure are musts for both planning and aviation.
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