Could you help build a plane this summer?

Alex Durand of SaxonAir at Norwich Airport hopes that the scheme will spark an interest in the next generation of engineers

Alex Durand of SaxonAir at Norwich Airport hopes that the green scheme will spark an interest in the next generation of engineers - Credit: Mike Rivett

Wannabe engineers in Norwich are being called to come together to build the world's first collaborative electric aircraft.

Those aged 14-25 with a keen interest in engineering are welcomed to gain hands-on experience at SaxonAir's summer school - being trailblazers in catapulting the aviation industry into the future, fronting a new green generation.

And the best part? Each space on the programme - broken into week-long stints - is completely free.

The project at the International Aviation Academy at Norwich Airport will run across six weeks, welcoming different teams over the course's duration.

SaxonAir is hosting the scheme in partnership with Nuncats, Action Community Enterprises and East Coast College to offer the unique experience to youngsters as part of the world’s first collaborative electric aircraft build project.

Alex Durand, SaxonAir's chief executive, said: "It's a really rare opportunity to get involved in something that's not only showcasing engineering skills, but also gives those skills a purpose.

John Dewing, left, flight support operations manager, and Alex Durand, chief executive of SaxonAir,

Alex Durand, chief executive of SaxonAir - Credit: Denise Bradley

"The project hopes to catch an interest in engineering, making it accessible to anyone.

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"It's important in this industry that people love what they do.

"Engineers are usually very alive and fascinated about their role day-to-day. It's a broad subject that's hands-on and you can see how things take shape.

"It's a worthwhile opportunity."

He added that the 20 sign ups to the 35-place scheme break the white male stereotype of aviation engineering, with youngsters of a variety of ages, genders and backgrounds keen to get stuck in.

And these young people are at the forefront of an industry that is set to be net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Enjoying a flight over Norwich and The Broads in the SaxonAir Eurocopter EC120 flown by helicopter p

SaxonAir has a fleet of 13 ad-hoc, on-demand charter aircraft made up of six helicopters and seven jets - Credit: Archant Norfolk

"It's happening and it's here, it's very real," he said.

"The aircraft of the future are available now.

"Rather than replacing what we have, this is an opportunity to strive for something new and help disadvantaged communities in the third world."

The prototype plane built by Norwich's up-and-coming engineers will be shown at the Old Buckenham Air Show at the end of July and, on completion in August, will go through proof concepting before being issued to the industry.

To apply for a place on the programme, which starts on Monday, July 4, email