Coachlines - November 2023

27.11.23 Steward Neil Sheath

A fantastic night for our aerospace engineer award winners

The annual Coachmakers’ Aerospace Industry Dinner was held on 16th November at Vintners’ Hall, where we were entertained by guest speakers Air Marshall Paul Lloyd CBE and Wing Commander Eoin Sands who delivered amusing speeches completely appropriate to our audience and kindly presented the certificates to the award winners, also assisted by Tony Westley who generously funds the Aerotron award.

Details of the awards can be found on our website, but short biographies of the winners are below. If you would like more information about any of the winners, such as offering work placements or wish to contact them, please email Steward Neil Sheath.


Alexander Phillips receives his award

The Sir Geoffrey De Havilland Scholarship winner is Alexander Phillips, who has recently completed an aircraft engineering apprenticeship where he worked on most types of engines and aircraft including radial, piston and jet engines, and has worked on modern and vintage aircraft. Alex started working in aircraft hangars while at school and has continued working with aircraft and volunteering with airshows and vintage aircraft collections since. He is also an accomplished glider pilot who competes at national level and has a Part 66 sailplane engineer’s licence.

Alex has demonstrated that he consistently and with humility gives his time to help others with appropriate measured judgement, and is an active volunteer with various organisations including self-help aviation groups, and during a world challenge expedition he helped construct part of a school in Borneo.

Alex is currently employed working for a company maintaining a variety of vintage and classic aircraft, where learning to fly a Tiger Moth will significantly enhance his professional understanding and abilities. Alex is a perfect fit for the aims of the Livery, and for this particular award in promoting young people in aircraft engineering skills, preserving classic aircraft aviation and also preserving the classic hands-on engineering fabrication skills for the future, while also supporting those organisations flying, operating, and providing services. He has also expressed a desire to become a Freeman of the Livery.

Award winner Hugo Cowley

The Captain Eric “Winkle” Brown Flying Scholarship winner is Hugo Cowley.

Hugo featured in last month’s Coachlines, and has applied to become a Freeman of the Livery. He is now helping the Aerospace Committee distribute information about the awards for the current livery year. Hugo has a longstanding interest in aviation, having been an active Air Cadet and volunteered with several historic aviation organisations helping to preserve the aircraft. At the time of the award, Hugo was working in a hangar at Dunkeswell aerodrome and volunteering at Navy Wings. He has completed some of the Part 66 licence modules and is using the award to help complete his studies, to gain US, UK, and European licences, to buy essential equipment required for historic aircraft maintenance such as fabric tooling, sheet metal tooling and basic electrical tooling as well as attending courses in these same subjects. Some of the award also funded a trip to the Reno Air Races where he had the opportunity to work with Sanders Aeronautics on its Sea Fury fleet competing at the event.

Hugo has now taken full time employment with Navy Wings, the second recipient of this award to do so, thus the award has also supported Navy Wings as well as the individual winners.

Bradley Hamilton and Aaron MacLeod receive their awards

Two Aerotron Scholarships were made to Bradley Hamilton and Aaron MacLeod, who have both expressed wishes to become Freemen.

Bradley Hamilton works for 2Excel Engineering at Lasham airfield where he is employed in large aircraft heavy maintenance. Bradley is studying for his Part 66 licence and impressed the committee with his determination to actively expand his personal skills by engaging in fabrication opportunities whenever available. Bradley is already using the award to increase the rate at which he is studying for his qualifications.

Aaron MacLeod is employed as an apprentice with Boeing UK in wide and varied tasks around the UK, both military and civil. The apprenticeship does not lead directly to becoming a licenced engineer and Aaron had commenced this process in his own time. Aaron has already used the award to help his studies and hopes to complete his licence studies in the near future.

Laila Fadli Dokkali receives her award

The Sir Sydney Camm Scholarship winner is Laila Fadli Dokkali.

Laila worked for several years as an aircraft dispatcher, among other jobs, to save and fund herself through Brunel University and to become an aircraft engineer. The award enabled Laila to complete her degree project and studies with support which was otherwise not available to her greatly assisting in her achievement of a first-class honours degree in aeronautical engineering. Laila is now studying for her Master’s degree at Cranfield University as well as working towards her CEng status. Laila is also actively engaged in supporting Coachmakers’ outreach and STEM activities.

Katherine Keogh and Lauren Steen

Two Sir Frederick Handley Page Scholarship awards were made to Katherine Keogh and to Lauren Steen who have both expressed wishes to engage with the Coachmakers’ awards processes in future and to become Freemen.

Lauren Steen graduated in 2022 from the Open University where she studied for a BSc in combined STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) whilst working as an engineering quality engineer in aircraft maintenance companies. Lauren is currently studying part time for a Master’s degree in aviation maintenance management at City University while working as a quality control engineer and although she is supported with study time by her employer, the award has provided the necessary IT equipment she needs to study and has already had a direct influence in assisting her career development.

Katherine Keogh was studying for her Master’s degree at Cranfield at the time of the award, which enabled her to buy equipment to complete her project and dissertation. The award also eased her transition directly into employment with Leonardo in its electronic warfare department. Katherine is engaged in extra-curricular work for the company where she is the point of contact for STEM outreach for Leonardo’s Bristol site.

Thomas Goonan receives his award

The Eric Beverley Bursary winner is Thomas Goonan. Thomas is researching the aeroelastic characteristics of a flexible wing and is not funded by any companies. The research requires significant experimental project and supercomputer time not available within university resources and the product is likely to greatly contribute towards the next level of aerodynamic efficiency. The award has allowed Thomas to fund project equipment and computer resources as well as funding experimental work and the publication of several papers which will be presented at international conferences in 2024.