Jamie Goatman, one of our Learjet 45/75 pilots, has recently marked 1,000 hours flying with us! Here we take a look back at how Jamie’s passion and determination from a young age has helped get him to where he is now.
“I’ve wanted to be a pilot since I was nine years old after my first visit to the Biggin Hill Air Show. We visited every year and after my A-levels, I pursued my aviation career and started as an Aircraft Handler at Jet Aviation at Biggin Hill Airport. I worked here for six years and my duties included aircraft cleaning, ground operation services and meeting and greeting private jets arriving at the airport. This role gave me a great grounding and a crucial insight into the world of Business Aviation.
Outside of work, my determination to become a pilot was still strong and in 2008 I completed my Private Pilot Licence (PPL) at Headcorn Airfield in Kent. I was now qualified to fly a single engine piston aircraft and in my spare time, I started to build on my flying hours by taking family and friends to various airfields across the UK and France.
My next career moved me to the main terminal at London Biggin Hill Airport in 2012. Here I worked as an Aircraft Refueller and Ramp Co-ordinator, which involved working in a busy airside environment whilst monitoring and planning aircraft movements.
During my time in this role, I continued to build flying hours in a Cessna 152 which was based on the airfield and completed the 14 ATPL theoretical exams on a distance learning course. Once I had the flying hours and experience, I then completed the Commercial Pilots Licence course and Multi-Engine Instrument rating course at Stapleford Airfield in Essex in 2014. This meant I could search for my first flying job, something which I had dreamt of!
As I was based at London Biggin Hill Airport, I was in the perfect place to network with the private jet operators on the airfield. My first flying job was as a freelance safety pilot flying a PC12 turbo prop aircraft based out of Denham in North London. I travelled to many European airfields and gained a solid understanding of commercial aviation.
I’d always had a good relationship with many of the pilots at Zenith Aviation over my time spent working at London Biggin Hill Airport. Then in January 2017 I was lucky enough to gain my first full time flying job with them – it really was a dream come true.
In my time here I have gained over 1,000 flying hours on the Learjet 45 & 75. The experience of flying high performance aircraft to exciting destinations is a remarkable feeling and I look forward to many more years within this unique industry.”
Stuart Mulholland, Managing Director at Zenith Aviation, comments: “Jamie’s story shows that if you have dedication, desire and hard work, you can make your dreams a reality. He has immersed himself into the aviation industry from a young age, honed his craft and has truly worked from the bottom up. He is a credit to have on the team.”
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