Dylan on Centennial Wings plane build

Dylan Crookshanks from Dromore (centre) and other cadets who are working on the Sting S4
Dylan Crookshanks from Dromore (centre) and other cadets who are working on the Sting S4

Whilst most youngsters are spending their summer holidays chasing Pokemon or engrossed in computer games, 14-year old Dylan Crookshanks from Dromore has been building a plane.

A member of 817 Squadron in Lisburn, Dyan, is also a member of the cadet team of the Northern Ireland Wing of the Air Training Corps who are currently working together to build a Sting S4 plane at Ulster Aviation Society’s Lisburn hangar.

The project - Centennial Wings, which has been supported by funding from Boeing and the Air League, is in the early stages as Dylan and the other 60 cadets from across the Province spend their weekends working on the plane to ensure it will be ready to fly at Farnborough Air Show in 2018 to mark the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force.

Project Officer Aaron Coulter commented on the project which is expected to take a year to complete: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the cadets who are taking part and a first for cadets from Northern Ireland.

“They have all been greatly enthused by the project, its not everyday kids get the opportunity to build an aircraft.”

Farnborough Airshow is decribed as ‘the world’s greatest airshow’ and the cadets will be in Hampshire to see their aircraft presented.

“The project team will all be at Farnborough,” added Aaron.

“Our cadets travel to the Royal International Air Tattoo every year but cadets in Northern Ireland don’t get the opportunity to go to Farnborough so it will be a great experience to see the aircraft fly at the airshow and also be on display for people to look at.”