There are a surprising number of celebrity pilots in the UK, so if you find yourself doing a double take at someone who walks past you on the apron or in the aero club café it may be because they’re one of those people who have a Private Pilot’s Licence and are also well-known for other reasons. Celebrity pilots in the UK are not as rare as you might think and in general aviation the chances are your paths will cross at some point.
Of course the thing about flying is that it doesn’t matter whether you’re famous or not, whether you’ve got millions to spare or if you’ve had to scrimp and save for an hour’s flying; the thing that counts is airmanship, your attitude, and your skills. Flying is a great leveller in that respect. The consequences of errors don’t discriminate.
“I didn’t have too many problems [on the PPL course]. Well, apart from the radio. I was rubbish at that. I can’t get my head around being that curt. When I’m talking to people I always say hello, goodbye and thank you, how are you, that sort of thing.”~ James May, August 2007
This list of celebrity pilots in the UK includes people from the world of music, sport, and entertainment as well as other walks of life, and it’s not know whether they are all still current license holders. There are a lot of musicians in this list and you’ll probably notice that there are very few women though that has already begun to change as more women take up flying having been inspired by those who have lead the way and championed women in aviation, like Carol Vorderman.
In the USA there are pleny of familiar faces; Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Gisele Bundchen, Harrison Ford, John Travolta, Tom Cruise to name a few, but this list comprises UK Pilots.
If you can add to this list of list of celebrity pilots in the UK or correct it in any way then please leave a comment beneath the post or let us know using this form. If you’d prefer to watch the video version then proceed with the copy below.
“We go around in circles. We look out of the window. People leave you alone. No one can get in touch with you, which is why I do it; peace and quiet. It’s escapism.”~ Lord Alan Sugar, April 2007
Celebrity Pilots in the UK
|Sir Ian Botham OBE||Sportsman|
|Alain de Cadenet||TV Presenter|
|Willie Carson OBE||Sporstman|
|Noel Edmonds||TV Presenter|
|David Essex OBE||Musician|
|Chris Evans||Media Presenter|
|Les Ferdinand MBE||Sporstman|
|Sir Norman Foster||Architect|
|Sir Michael Gambon CBE||Actor|
|David Gilmour CBE||Musician|
|David Gower OBE||Sportsman|
|Richard Hammond||TV Presenter|
|Alex James FRSA||Musician|
|Sir David Jason OBE||Actor|
|Don Maclean KSS||Comedian|
|Nigel Mansell CBE||Sportsman|
|James May||TV Presenter|
|Sir John Stevens||Former Police Commissioner|
|Lord Alan Sugar||Businessman|
|Rory Underwood MBE||Sportsman|
|Carol Vorderman MBE RAFVR||Media Personality|
“It’s amazing. It’s something different. There’s nothing like a Yak 52, especially compared to the PA28. It’s a different animal.”~ Joe Pasquale, July 2007
Pilots in The Royal Family
|The Duchess of York||Royal Family|
|The Duke of Edinburgh||Royal Family|
|The Duke of York||Royal Family|
|Prince Harry||Royal Family|
|Prince William||Royal Family|
|The Prince of Wales||Royal Family|
“I never thought I’d be able to master hovering a helicopter. There are just too many things to do.”~ John Reynolds, July 2008
There are of course many more famous faces you might see emerging from a cockpit. Here are just a few of those celebrity pilots who have discovered the joy of flight. If you can think of any we’ve missed, let us know.
Celebrity Pilots USA
Our list of celebrity pilots in the USA has been removed to this new post.