Aviation Business - - DE­PAR­TURE LOUNGE -

Steve Ford was born in Portsmouth in the UK and ed­u­cated at St John’s Col­lege, Southsea. Trained as a pro­fes­sional air­craft en­gi­neer, he holds air­craft engi­neer­ing li­cences both sides of the At­lantic, hav­ing served a full ap­pren­tice­ship with Bri­tish Cale­do­nian Air­ways. He joined BCal in 1978. Full in­de­pen­dent Air­line Trans­port Pi­lot’s li­cences, again from both sides of the At­lantic, cou­pled with a solid engi­neer­ing back­ground have provided ex­ten­sive op­por­tu­ni­ties to ex­er­cise the two dis­ci­plines; with Bri­tish Aero­space and from 1993 to 2016 with Vir­gin At­lantic Air­ways.

Ford re­mains pas­sion­ate about the avi­a­tion in­dus­try which led him to write his first book, ‘20 West’. Span­ning six decades, from pro­pel­ler-driven trans­port air­craft to com­pos­ite, fly-by-wire and wide-body dou­ble-decker air­craft plucked from the pages of science fic­tion, 20

West charts the emo­tion, the phys­i­cal ex­pe­ri­ence, the joy and the an­guish of fly­ing. It is not a blow-by-blow ac­count of the avi­a­tion in­dus­try. Nor is it merely one per­son’s story of their ca­reer in avi­a­tion. Rather, it is a col­lec­tion of snap­shots – some hu­mor­ous, some heart-break­ing

– of the peo­ple and the air­craft that shaped a life­long pas­sion for flight.

Now liv­ing in West Sus­sex, nes­tled against the South Downs Na­tional Park, Ford con­tin­ues to fly and is adamant that he con­tin­ues to learn...

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