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Old 21st Nov 2015, 21:18   #1 (permalink)
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Question Anyone here work at The Shuttleworth Collection?

I'm interested in going into vintage aviation as a career. What's the best way of getting started? A Levels? Apprenticeship? Degree?

Any (constructive) advice welcome.
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Old 22nd Nov 2015, 11:25   #2 (permalink)
 
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Why not write to the Shuttleworth Collection direct? I think they're likely to be as helpful as possible. However they employ very few people indeed and rely on a mass of volunteers to do the donkey work including engineering I believe (under the staff Chief Engineer). All their pilots are ex ETPS.

I'm not sure what careers you might find in "Vintage Aviation" - pretty thin pickings I'd imagine as it's a tiny and rather specialised field but be prepared to get considerable relevant experience as an Engineer (wood and fabric airframes are not well covered in modern engineering training, I think you'll find) and then spend a lot of time volunteering.

Good luck, it would be fun!
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Old 22nd Nov 2015, 20:09   #3 (permalink)
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Hi Wageslave, thanks for the reply.
I've tried smaller engineering companies/individuals in my area, none of whom have spaces and aren't sure of a path to get into the industry. At least Shuttleworth is slightly bigger.
Most apprenticeships in the area, as you have mentioned, will teach nothing about wood and fabric. Big shiny tubes of people don't really interest me (but can I afford to be that picky? ).
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Old 22nd Nov 2015, 22:05   #4 (permalink)
 
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Most of Shuttleworth's pilots are current or ex military TPs (not necessarily ETPS, there are other schools), but not all. They are certainly all high ability professional pilots.

PilotZ - what's your current professional / educational profile? What professional activities excite you most?

There's more going on at Duxford in terms of restoration and operating companies employing people than at Shuttleworth, and there are other places - Turweston for example with quite a lot of people earning their living in the general field. There are also a great many museums around the UK, many of which have at-least some professional staff.

G
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Old 22nd Nov 2015, 22:11   #5 (permalink)
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Ron Souch lives somewhere near Southampton and has earned a living turning out simply superb restorations of Moths and all sorts of other classics for years. If you haven't contacted him already, I wonder if he might be able to offer some advice.
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Old 22nd Nov 2015, 22:25   #6 (permalink)
 
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Go to the airfield and have a sniff around. Become a volunteer and see where it goes. Worked for me.

C.A
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Old 23rd Nov 2015, 06:17   #7 (permalink)
 
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Shuttleworth do run apprentice schemes for engineers, so if that's something you're interested in, it's worth enquiring and applying.

As someone else has already suggested, whatever aspect of vintage aviation, it's worth contacting them direct.
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Old 23rd Nov 2015, 17:53   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks all for the replies!

Genghis - I'm in my last year of secondary school. I'm a glider pilot on an airfield that deals with a lot of light aircraft too, so I've been able to see and help out with the maintenance on some aircraft. Good lord have I fallen in love with seeing aircraft insides!!

Treadigraph - I've met Ron and his son Mike at their workshop. I fired them off an email some time ago regarding apprenticeships and where I should be looking but received no reply. Unsure if they saw the email or not.

I'm thinking I need to send off a few more emails. My previous email to Shuttleworth harvested no reply. A common theme
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Old 23rd Nov 2015, 21:10   #9 (permalink)
 
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Another possibility is the RAF Museum. The Conservation centre at Cosford certainly has apprentices on its books........
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Old 24th Nov 2015, 00:12   #10 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
I'm thinking I need to send off a few more emails. My previous email to Shuttleworth harvested no reply. A common theme
What a sad reflection on plain human decency and politeness.
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Old 24th Nov 2015, 09:20   #11 (permalink)
 
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You sent an email to a bunch of wood/fabric grease monkeys?( meant in the fondest sense) You will have to try a lot harder than that!
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Old 24th Nov 2015, 17:36   #12 (permalink)
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Heheh yes I know I'm making an effort to visit the Collection on their engineering open weekend in the new year.
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Old 24th Nov 2015, 18:01   #13 (permalink)
 
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I don't know them personally, but from Southampton especially, here's a bunch I'd have thought you want to go and visit. I have no idea at-all if they are taking on apprentices, but you can only ask.

About Us - Aerotech Solento Ltd

Also whilst you are still at school...

Volunteers You're presumably under 18, so the best bet is go and ask.

G
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Old 24th Nov 2015, 21:32   #14 (permalink)
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Cheers Genghis! Seems like Aerotech is a quiet company. I've been at this airfield nearly 3 years and never heard of them!!!
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Old 25th Nov 2015, 11:25   #15 (permalink)
 
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Hi,

We are in Scotland (far away) and don't have the work you want (sorry).

But I am of the generation that might give you work.

I despair of my children - in their 20s - who seem to think that an email or text message will lead to a job. Maybe that's how Hollywood portrays it?

You need to knock on doors. Most industries - and I would include aviation - are pretty traditional. To be frank, forget about any qualifications/exams. etc. What will probably get you the job is people seeing/hearing you. It is what used to be called: getting a foot in the door.

Phone and ask if there is a time - even during lunch break - that someone can spend just five minutes with you. Tell them you are going around a load of places, picking up information, asking for advice.

Even just knock on the door a few minutes before lunchtime.

You'll need to push!

But the great advantage you have over all the others - who will still be sending over emails - is you have come on here and got some advice.

ps. Later on in life, when romance starts to enter, you'll find emails, texts and telephone answering machines are great when it comes to breaking up! That's also why they are useless for getting jobs. Too remote.

ps Above means unsolicited emails etc. Obviously, some companies now only take formal applications via electronic means.

Last edited by xrayalpha; 25th Nov 2015 at 11:26. Reason: Added PS
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Old 27th Nov 2015, 19:25   #16 (permalink)
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Hi Xrayalpha,

Thanks for the encouragement! I do try to make an effort to go to these companies when I can. The whole reason I love vintage aviation is because there's a sense of 'doing it properly'.
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Old 14th Jan 2018, 10:33   #17 (permalink)
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Hi all,
Incase anyone happens to see this:

I managed to get a part time job at Aero Antiques (Mike Souch's place) and have been to Shuttleworth for work experience twice now. I am applying for their apprenticeship when the application comes out very soon.

I was 15 when I started this thread and am now almost 18. Strange looking back at it!
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Old 14th Jan 2018, 11:26   #18 (permalink)
 
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We'll done, keep going.
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Old 14th Jan 2018, 12:20   #19 (permalink)
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Brilliant news, well done and good luck with your application!
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Old 14th Jan 2018, 17:16   #20 (permalink)
 
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Good for you!
I worked for a few years in the trade in the early 70s. Joined with no real experience ( lots of DIY and rebuilds on cars and a short stint with a crop dusting outfit) Within a short time I was doing rebuilds on DH, Austers, Miles, Stamps, along with the modern tin a/craft. There was not a lot of money in it then (is there now?) But an event took me elsewhere. I sometime wonder what might have happened if I had continued. Got a lot of 'hands on' airtime and met some interesting people.
Good luck.
DW
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