Great aviation heritage
Welcome to Yorkshire Aviation Academy, based at Leeds East Airport formerly RAF Church Fenton. The airfield and local area is steeped in aviation history, pilots have been training and learning to fly here for over 50 years. Our flight training organisation has been established to build upon and continue this great aviation heritage.
Whether you are considering becoming a Private Pilot and flying for pure enjoyment with friends and family or have your sights set on becoming an Airline Pilot, we are here to help you!
Enjoy the thrill of taking control of an aircraft while taking in the stunning views of Yorkshire with one of our trial flying lessons. It’s the perfect way to start your aviation journey!
Our advanced training courses include restricted instrument and night ratings, all designed to help you enhance your pilot skills.
We offer guidance and mentoring to all pilots, whether you are just embarking on your initial training, undertaking further training or pursuing your commercial licence.
We aim to deliver a training program that fulfills the specific requirements of our customers.
Meet the team
Our team of instructors have over 100,000 hours of flight and instructional time between them. Their experience encompasses the whole array of civilian and military flying. Including UK Airlines, World Wide passenger and freight operations and RAF fast jet training. Every member of our instructional staff has a passion to instruct and meet the individual needs of the student pilot. Everyday we all learn something new about flying – there’s no such thing as a silly question here at YAA!
Born in West Yorkshire Nick has always had a passion for all things flying, building and flying model aircraft and taking his first flight in a light aircraft from Oxenhope International Airport. He started his aviation journey proper with a RAF Flying Scholarship at Skegness in 1989, then joining East Midlands University Air Squadron flying the Scottish Aviation Bulldog, completing his PPL in 1991.
HEAD OF TRAINING
Andy started his aviation career aged 15 spending every weekend flying gliders, before being awarded an RAF Air Cadet Gliding and Flying scholarship which allowed him to complete his PPL in only one month.
SAFETY REPRESENTATIVE & INSTRUCTOR
Coming from an aviation family, it was only natural that Tim Simpson should follow his father’s footsteps and join the RAF. He completed his basic and fast-jet flying training on the Jet Provost and Hawk before going back to instruct on the JP at RAF Church Fenton, now Leeds East Airport.
Natasha has joined us having honed her organisational skillset from being an office manager at a Special Effects & Design agency down in London; Producer for a photographers’ agent, where she organised numerous global photo shoots. She then moved to the middle of the country and worked as a creative resourcer for an advertising agency. Here she was THE scheduling Queen!
CUSTOMER SERVICE APPRENTICE
THEORETICAL KNOWLEDGE INSTRUCTOR
Jon’s love of flying started when he tied a plank to his bike when age 7, and pedalling like fury down a north Leeds street, tried to emulate the Wright brothers. After all, how hard can it be? After being given a trial flying lesson by his wife, as a birthday present in 1993, Jon’s aviation career took off.
FLIGHT EXAMINER & INSTRUCTOR
Born in the North East, Tom moved to Yorkshire at the age of 10. He started gliding at the age of 14 and gained his PPL at the age 17 through a RAF Flying Scholarship. Tom was fortunate to join the University Air Squadron before graduating with a degree in Aerospace Engineering and becoming an Avionics Systems Engineer.
Roger started flying age 16 at Doncaster Aero Club, spending many an hour cleaning the aircraft and helping around the Aerodrome. Soon after attaining his PPL he amassed hours to begin instructing and started on the road to commercial aviation.
THEORETICAL KNOWLEDGE INSTRUCTOR
Kerry’s the odd one out, though it may be hard to spot. He’s from New Zealand, where he decided to become a pilot soon after finding out about aircraft at age 4. This was allegedly some time ago.
Richard joined the RAF way back in 1985 and flew a variety of aircraft, culminating finishing his RAF career as a flight commander on a Hercules squadron. During his period in the RAF he was also a flying instructor.
This classic 2 seat trainer is a delight to fly and serves well as a basic training aircraft.
4 seats and with a greater range than the Cessna, it provides a stable platform for those undertaking instrument training.