Midwives have had the experience of a lifetime thanks to Rattlesden Flying Club.
The club offered flights over the Suffolk countryside as a thank you gift to NHS staff who have been at the forefront of dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
Along with their partners, friends and family, the West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust midwives, who are attached to the hospitals in Bury St Edmunds and Newmarket, turned up at the club’s airfield near Felsham for the half-hour flights which took them up to 2,000ft and over a 10 to 15 mile radius high above the Suffolk skies.
Some of them took the controls during the flights and Nina Fawcett, the team lead for Forest Heath midwives in Newmarket and who helped to organise the event, described it as a “fantastic” day.
She said when they were high in the sky it was visible enough to see as far as Ipswich and the Orwell Bridge down to the Port of Felixstowe and the River Stour.
“It was just such a beautiful day and it was such a wonderful experience,” said Nina.
Ian Godding, a director at the club, said the offer of the flights, which took place earlier this month, came about from one of its members who had links with the midwifery team.
“He thought it would be a nice idea for NHS colleagues who have worked so hard throughout the pandemic.” said Ian.
“Some of them took the controls while others just wanted to look out from the cockpit.”
And the day has led to the club now offering 20 per cent discount to NHS staff who want to take part in flights from the airfield.
There’s a raft of different experiences, lessons and courses available ranging in price from £45 to £299 and details can be found on their website rattlesdengliding.com.
Sue Smith, head of fundraising for My WiSH Charity, attended the day to watch staff enjoy their experience.
She thanked the flying club for their generous offer and said: “This is just a wonderful thing for the club to offer. Everyone has had such a fantastic day. Thank you to all involved”.