Former Public Services Student, Charlotte Celebrates Significant Milestone in her Military Career

In News, on the 23rd, November 2015

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Charlotte celebrates her ‘Passing in Parade’ at Royal Naval Air Station Culrose in Cornwall after six months of intensive training.

Naval Airman (Aircraft Handler) (NA(AH)) Charlotte Cooke, 22, fromH Hill in Darlington was the only female in the group of twenty aircraft handlers who celebrated their ‘Passing in Parade’ at Royal Naval Air Station Culrose in Cornwall after six months of intensive training.

Charlotte, who began her career on a Public Services course at the College after Longfield School, had to train hard to compete with the rest of her group but welcomed the challenge.

Charlotte said: “After doing my A levels I was unsure about what direction to take. Completing  my Public Service course at Darlington College gave me an insight into military life which I really enjoyed, my tutors encouraged me to apply for the Navy and supported me in preparation for interviews and tests, there support has certainly helped me achieve my ambition to be where I am now

“It means a lot to be here today, being the only girl can be challenging, and I’ve had to push myself hard, but it’s been worth it. It has been six months of intensive work but it has all been worth it”

Her mum Carol said the family were incredibly proud of Charlotte’s achievements and her determination to succeed in her career.

“Charlotte is so motivated and so determined that she wasn’t in the slightest bit daunted by being the only female. She is an amazing girl and her career will go from strength to strength.

Giving out the awards, Royal Navy Commander Jonathan Bird addressed the crowd and said:

“The aircraft handlers are the last contact you have with a ship when you take off, and the first when you return. They are a welcome sight.”

“The trust we have in our aircraft handlers is not given lightly, but earned through continued hard work and skills taught here. Aviation can be a dangerous game, but the future is bright for the Fleet Air Arm and you will all play a vital role.”

The 20 aircraft handlers will now disperse and go onto various units and ships across the globe. They will play an essential role on the flight decks of the Royal Navy’s two new aircraft carriers. Some have been selected to work on the future Aircraft Carrier programme working with the United States Navy at various Air Stations throughout America.

Public Services tutor Gary Paxton said Charlotte always stood out for her effort during her two-year course at the college.

“The military was a natural choice for Charlotte and I had no doubt at all that she would excel in her chosen career. The College is very proud of her and we will watch her achievements with pride,” he said.

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