2020 Award Winners

Muriel Sells Trophy

This award is made to a BWPA member who has supported the Association either by regularly attending events or by working in the background to further the association’s aims

RECIPIENT: Helen Hennessy

Helen has been a valued committee member, who has brought a considered, business-like approach, and represented the BWPA at several events.

As Membership Coordinator, Helen has developed an accurate and thorough dataset that is vital for understanding the BWPA membership. She is proactive in producing statistics which support the whole committee, ensuring the BWPA is able to maximise its limited resources.

She has taken the lead in developing the five-year BWPA strategy. Putting together a plan of action, leading dedicated sessions in a tactful and diplomatic manner, and keeping everyone focussed have been her key actions towards building a robust plan that will guide the team’s work.

BWPA Special Recognition Award

To be awarded in recognition of active support of women in aviation.

RECIPIENT: Cheryl Sullivan

Cheryl has been an active member and supporter of the BWPA for many years, and has regularly attended committee meetings. She is always ready to volunteer her help and support.

This award was in recognition of organising successful and enjoyable awards dinners for many years. No easy task to find a suitable venue, negotiate a good price, organise bookings, take payment, and keep things running smoothly on the day.

These events really have been the highlight of the BWPA calendar.

RECIPIENT: Lyn Ferguson Dalling

When Lyn’s gliding club needed a new Chief Flying Instructor, she volunteered with unwavering enthusiasm and set about re-energising club members and instructors alike. The club had seen a decline in membership numbers and the members who remained were not making personal progression in their flying. Lyn set herself and the club some high ambitions, including targeted training weekends and five-day courses to entice new members into the club. Her passion to help her members achieve has been rewarded by the number of new qualifications they have obtained, including six Basic Instructors, eight Bronze Badges, over 20 Silver leg awards and one Gold distance award.

Chairwoman’s Challenge Trophy

Awarded to the competition entry judged to be the most interesting or unusual navigation flight on the theme of ‘Blue Sapphire’. The competition is judged on the basis of flight logs, photographs, accuracy of times and other supporting material submitted by entrants. The judges also take into account the experience of the pilots.


Amy tackled the challenge of ‘Blue Sapphire’ by flying her aircraft to create a heart, decorated with two diamond-shaped sapphires, as a GPS image. There was a huge amount of planning involved, both to draw the GPS image accurately and to fly past a large number of lakes and rivers – to add to the ‘blue’ theme. It was also an opportunity for Amy to visit some grass strips for the first time.

Amy’s route started from Fowlmere Airfield, then she had an interim stop at Main Hall Farm Airfield before making her final landing at Little Gransden Airfield. This was Amy’s message of support and thanks to the NHS, and message of love to everyone in these difficult times.

Brabazon Cup

This cup was presented to the BWPA by Lord Brabazon of Tara in 1959. It is awarded for one particularly outstanding or noteworthy performance in aviation.

RECIPIENT: Fiona Macaskill

This summer, Fiona and her husband, BWPA member Angus, set a new Guinness World Record – the most airfields visited in 12 hours by fixed-wing aircraft.

Together, they spent countless hours planning many different versions of the route and building a spreadsheet to keep all the key information usable in a high-pressure environment. They also made best use of navigational technology, using different tools for different purposes, ensuring that they were safe on the day and had the records they needed to submit to Guinness

The meticulous planning certainly paid off on the day. Despite deteriorating weather, they successfully landed at 71 airfields, a feat witnessed by a cohort of 28 volunteers, including several other BWPA members.

Naomi Christy Cup

This trophy is awarded for a flying or flying related personal achievement, beyond the recipient’s wildest dreams. This award is not aimed at the ‘record breaker’ or ‘high achievers’, but is awarded for an achievement ‘special’ to the individual.

RECIPIENT: Steph Smith

After inheriting her father’s Schleicher Ka6CR glider in 2017, Steph lovingly restored it to be airworthy again in his memory. ‘Bymbo’ had her first flight in five years in 2019, and Steph wrote about her passion for the project for the BWPA and for ‘Sailplane and Gliding’ magazine.

Steph has been gliding since she was ten years old and is currently working towards her Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL). She volunteers as a STEM Ambassador and as a mentor to support women transferring to careers in aerospace engineering. She is also one of this year’s BWPA scholarship winners.

Jackie Moggridge Cup

This trophy is awarded to a British Woman Pilot for achieving excellent qualifications in her chosen career.

RECIPIENT: Elle Scothern

Elle achieved her Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL) in 2018, after just six months of training. She then completed her Airline Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL) exams in March 2020 at CAE Oxford, passing all exams with a 90% average. She was selected from hundreds of applicants to train at Diamond Flight Academy in Sweden, and by July 2020 she had completed her Commercial Pilot’s Licence (CPL), Multi-Engine Rating (ME) and Instrument Rating (IR), all with first time passes. She is looking forward to completing the final stage of her commercial pilot training, and to achieve her dream of becoming an airline pilot.

Hilda Hewlett Trophy

Presented to a British woman pilot between the ages of 16 and 25, who has shown initiative and commitment in gaining her PPL (with a view to following a career in aviation) and who, through her actions and her example, is an inspiration to her peer group.


Daisy achieved her Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL) in 2020 at the age of 21, having started flying at 16. Despite her numerous other responsibilities, including school, work and university, she passed her skills test on her first attempt. She is now working towards her tailwheel and night ratings.

After leaving school, Daisy worked for two years training air traffic controllers, in order to fund her PPL training. As a member of Oxford University Air Squadron, Daisy was awarded put in charge of the flying programme for 2020. She strives to inspire and aid other women to become pilots, both in her squadron and beyond.

Jean Lennox Bird Pendant

This award is made to a British woman pilot who has served aviation over a period of time in any aspect, consistently achieving goals, showing diligence to duties and encouragement to others.

RECIPIENT: Julie Westhorp

Julie embarked on a career change in her forties, working her way through each stage of pilot training and securing a job as an airline pilot. She has since spent many hours giving back to the aviation community as an instructor, encouraging her students through their CPL training. She was a committee member and Chairwoman of the BWPA, overseeing the formalising of the Association as a limited company and the early stages of the Amy Johnson Initiative with easyJet. Julie has undertaken STEM work for the BWPA and the Aviatrix Project to inspire the next generation of female pilots.

Faith Bennett Navigation Cup

This trophy is awarded to a British Woman Pilot for a navigation exercise undertaken during the current year of special merit or that stretches the experience of the pilot to the limits, reaching goals beyond the pilot’s expectations. It can be given to regions for group flights/achievements.

RECIPIENT: Amy Whitewick

Amy learnt to fly microlights in 2018, then bought a Cessna 150 in which she completed her PPL in 2019. Inspired to prove that aviation can be as creative as any other endeavour, Amy decided to fly a route to recreate Picasso’s 1961 ‘Dove of Peace’ as a GPS image. This was a challenging experience, given the changing coastal winds, difficult traffic and moderate turbulence on the day – made even harder by COVID-19 restrictions preventing a fellow pilot accompanying Amy as a lookout.

OP Jones Gliding Trophy

Awarded to a British Woman Pilot for an achievement or special contribution to gliding, hang gliding or paragliding.

RECIPIENTS: Lucy and Lowenna Cotton

Lucy and Lowenna are sisters who share a love of gliding. Lowenna, the younger of the two, soloed at the age of 14 and one month. Lucy gained her Bronze Badge and Silver height, and was ready to attempt her Cross Country Endorsement just after her 16th birthday, despite having been diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME approximately a year earlier. Lowenna has been a huge support to Lucy as she battles this condition and they both continue to achieve in gliding, despite the setbacks of COVID-19 and their personal circumstances; a true display of persistence, determination and sisterly support.

Jack Brackenbury Photographic Competition

This trophy was first awarded in 2004 in memory of Jack and to encourage members to record our events as he used to. Entries may include photos sent in for the newsletter and website as well as the archives and the competition itself. (No citation written in the book)

RECIPIENT: Allie Dunnington

Allie sent in an eye-catching and memorable photograph of her two booted feet overhead Bristol Airport to accompany an article she wrote for Global Wind Day 2020.

This photograph stands out as it does not just show beautiful aircraft of various types, or stunning scenery, which ‘anyone’ could take if they were in the right place and at the right time. Instead, thought has gone into creating a picture from an unusual perspective that makes you stop and think; also a simple image that manages to capture the obvious fun and joy that ballooning brings her.

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