SCHOOLGIRL Lucy Hadlow is flying high after becoming one of the youngest people in the country to become a qualified glider pilot.

The 14-year-old from Urchfont, near Devizes, made her first solo flight in a glider at Upavon as her proud mother Dawn and grandfather John Bradley looked on.

They both knew what she was experiencing as they are both experienced glider pilots.

Lucy, a pupil at Lavington School, comes from a family of fliers. Her mother was one of the first females recruited into the RAF as a pilot in 1990, where she flew Hawks and Tucanos before joining the Royal Squadron at Northolt. Although no longer in the RAF, Mrs Hadlow still flies light aircraft and and is a gliding instructor.

Her father Chris flew Jaguars in the RAF before leaving the service and a private company as a pilot. In addition to flying the firm's business jet, he also flies an Mk 19 Spitfire at air displays.

Britain has only recently reduced the age for glider pilots from 16 to 14 to fall in line with European regulations.

Mr Bradley, 78, from Milton Lilbourne, near Pewsey, said: "We were a bit nervous watching her on her first solo flight from the ground but we knew she was mature enough to handle it."

Lucy's father said: "We are all very proud of her."

She had spent several months taking lessons at Upavon before being allowed to fly solo.