“I could talk for hours flying”: Prince William, four years old, was inspired to learn how helicopters were used by his father.

  • Prince William was born in a home where flying is a passion.
  • He flew in helicopters with his father. 
  • After graduating from pilot school, William flew for the RAF and East Anglia Air Ambulance.

William discovered his love for flying when he was young and flew with his father in helicopters.

He recalled that the Prince flew with East Anglia Air Ambulance and the RAF, and kept a precious photograph from one of these trips on his bedroom wall.

He says, “I could talk about flying for hours.” As a child, I flew a lot, and I had the opportunity to go on a few flights with my father. Wessex is an old helicopter that no longer operates. The front seat was mine.

“I was unaware at the time of how profound it would have on me. But I was absolutely in love with it. A photograph of their trip was presented to me. They gave me a photograph from the trip. ‘

William's love of flying was forged during his childhood when he took flights in helicopters, including with his father. Pictured: Prince William aged four in a helicopter cockpit

William developed a love for flying during his childhood, when he was taken on helicopter flights with his father. Pictured is Prince William at four years old in a helicopter cockpit

Following a time in the Army’s Household Cavalry, he decided to go into the RAF and join it in January 2009. After completing his pilot training, he was appointed a search-and-rescue pilot at RAF Valley in Anglesey in North Wales.

He said, “I felt that helicopter training was the best thing I had ever done.” It was one of those experiences that I felt compelled to do and instantly thought “This is awesome!”

In 2015, The Duke of Cambridge began a new role as a pilot in the East Anglian Air Ambulance. Speaking on the first day in the job – which he left in 2017 to take up full-time royal duties – he said: ‘For me it is also really important to be grounded. A job such as this helps me to ground my core and what I want to be.

Prince Charles was a pilot in the RAF just like his father. He flew to training school for pilots in 1971. He became a pilot in a helicopter three years later.

Pictured: Prince William doing his first shift with the East Anglian Air Ambulance in 2015

Pictured is Prince William in his 2015 first shift at the East Anglian Air Ambulance