Aviation Milestone for Junglie Pilot
Lieutenant Commander Neil Davidson, the Training Officer of 846 Naval Air Squadron (NAS) based at RNAS Yeovilton, has reached a rare and prestigious milestone in his long aviation career by achieving his 5000th flying hour or over 7 months in the air during a training sortie at the base.
Many of the Line Pilots on 846 Sqn could only dream of ever reaching this remarkable feat, and so thought it appropriate that Lt Cdr Davidson celebrate the milestone in the correct Junglie fashion with a fine bottle of bubbly.
Lt Cdr Davidson Joined the RN in Sept 1986, gained wings in June 1988, he has not only flown frontline in the Sea King but also in the Gazelle, and has deployed to numerous corners of the world including: Iraq, France, USA, the Mediterranean, Northern Ireland, the former Yugoslavia, Ukraine, Poland and Afghanistan but he is most renowned for being one the most experienced pilots in the Arctic Theatre, spending a large chunk of his career in Northern Norway.
On passing this milestone Neil said “It’s a great feeling to get through so many hours safely. I’ve had lots of very memorable trips in the Sea King, as well as many a scary moment. I’m now looking forward to the challenges of flying the more modern Merlin and the next milestone of 6000 Hours!”
“The wealth of knowledge and experience which Neil brings to his Squadron is incredible” added Captain Matt Briers, CO CHF, “Neil is a key enabler within the squadron and to the CHF as a whole. Reaching 5000 flying hours is a significant milestone for any pilot and it is fitting to see him achieve this whilst serving on the front line with 846 NAS. His role in the helicopter rescue of a Norwegian fisherman in freezing waters in northern Norway earlier this year underpins his tremendous aviation acumen and ability.”