Build A Plane

The Spirit of Goole setup a youth Build a Plane project in September 2013.  This involved giving the young people involved the opportunity to be taught all of the skills needed to be able to construct a fully operational aircraft before then giving them the tools and materials to actually do it.  The idea of this project was to help develop the skill set of the young people involved as well as let them be part of something amazing and hopefully have fun!

The build took 3 years to complete and the aircraft was operational by September 2016.  It is now been used by our Air Academy to teach young people to fly!

Skills Developed

The youngsters involved were really able to gain real-world engineering experience throughout this project due to the wide range of materials, tools and machinery they were able to work with – many of which are not accessible to them in schools!  However, the skill set they developed wasn’t only limited to engineering but also covered maths, science and other useful life skills.

The aircraft we chose to build (a Sherwood Ranger Xp) was a perfect candidate for allowing these skills to be developed due to the wide range of materials it incorporates within it.


When constructing the aircraft’s aluminium air-frame, the youngsters had to cut and shape every bracket and tube as well as assemble them together.  This allowed for a wide range of metalwork skills to be developed.


With almost the entire wings made from wood, there was plenty of woodworking for the students to bite their teeth into, including cutting, filing, sanding and using machinery such as band saws and belt sanders.

Composite Work

With a lot of the aircrafts shaping and bondings done from fibreglass, the youths were able to gain valuable experience on how to work safely with composite materials.

Handling Chemicals

With a wide range of harsh chemicals being used throughout the build, the young people involved were taught how to handle and use these chemicals, glues and liquids in a safe manner.

Handling Machinery

With access to lots of heavy tools and machinery, the young people involved were taught how to safely operate machinery and the precautions they need to take when doing so.  Most schools do not allow their students access to the machinery that we allow the young people we work with to access meaning that gaining this skill with us will put them at a massive head start over other school children.


Building an aeroplane requires everybody involved to work effectively as a team and have good communication skills.  These skills were developed through all involved in this project.

Social Skills

Possibly one of the most important skills out of them all, the students who took part in this project have improved their social skills.  Many of them were very shy when they first started but after working with each other in a team, that soon changed – in fact, we now struggle to shut some of them up!  This also includes socialising with the public, most of the young people involved with the project are now happy to talk to members of the public at shows and events about this project they are so passionate about.  The fun environment we work in along with this means that many of our young people involved also made good friends throughout this project.

Students Involved

Below is a list of students, that through their hard work and fundraising efforts towards this project have got their names on the plane:

Aaron Evans Aaron Furlong Aaron Robinson Abbie Dennis Adam Brown
Aiden Last Alex Darley Alex Jackson Anthony McKeown Ben Richardson
Bethany Thomson Billie Wilson Cade Noon Carter Spooner Chloe Sellers
Christina Maplebeck Connor Taylor Coran Rooke Dimitrijs Popovs Dominic Storey
Eloise Punter Harry James Hope Newman Ilmans Bveavs Jack McLoughlin
Jack Pepper Jason Bedford Kane Lomax Karen Walton Katie Dennis
Kean Noon Liam Clayton Louis Brown Lucy Symonds Marcelina Oleksy
Mathew Hunt Matty McIlroy Maxims Juku Michael Dano Michael West
Michelle Brown Myles Harrand Phillipa MacKinder Richard Louro Robert Ware
Ryan Elcock Ryan Judge Ryan McDonald Sam Wilson Sean Gladwin
Tom Lloyd Will Brown

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