Leeds & West Yorkshire

Hebridean pilot draws 'NHS' message above Yorkshire

The flight plan Image copyright Hebridean Air Services
Image caption Mr Tuna used an app to plot his planned route.

A pilot has created a 35-mile wide tribute to the NHS by writing a message in the skies above Yorkshire.

Yak Tuna, 23, spent two hours writing the letters "NHS" over the Yorkshire Dales as he conducted a routine maintenance flight on Wednesday.

Mr Tuna, who works for Hebridean Air Services, was in Leeds as the aircraft he flies needed a new engine fitted.

The commercial pilot said he wanted to do the tribute to thank NHS staff for "their hard work and dedication".

He said: "I thought I might as well do something productive during the maintenance flight. Number one, it makes the time go a little bit quicker and, number two, it's just quite a nice tribute to the NHS."

Mr Tuna, who has worked for the Scotland-based airline for a year, usually flies between islands in the Inner and Outer Hebrides.

He organised his route on a flight plan app before taking off from Leeds Bradford Airport.

Image copyright Hebridean Air Services
Image caption The view from the cockpit, which passed over the Yorkshire Dales, was "unbelievable".

He said: "To have everything line up with the weather, the air traffic and the airspace, to pull something off on the right day, works out quite well.

"It was about 20 miles high and approximately 35 miles wide. It is a pretty big tribute and we're privileged to have air traffic control to accommodate us doing it.

"The view was unbelievable. I've haven't seen a day like that over Yorkshire in a very long time. Blue skies, great visibility, great contrast of the hills and the sunlight. It was a cracking place, really."

More on this story