Care home resident, 94, completes lifetime wish to fly plane

  • WATCH: Frances taking control of the plane as she flew over Oxfordshire

A 94-year-old care home resident in Banbury has completed a lifelong wish this Christmas, by taking to the skies and flying a plane.

Frances Gilkes, a resident at Seccombe Court in Oxfordshire, was able to take her very first flying lesson after a 'Wishing Tree' was installed at the home.

The Wishing Tree is an initiative launched by Care UK which allows residents to suggest hobbies they'd like to try or places they'd like to visit.

"I loved every second," Ms Gilkes said of the experience.

"It was brilliant to take control of the plane and be flying over my home, looking down on so many places I have visited.

"The views were spectacular as it was such a clear day."

After Ms Gilkes stated that it was her lifelong wish to fly a plane, staff were able to organise a flying lesson at Enstone Airfield in Enstone, Oxfordshire.

While she had been on planes before for holidays, this was her first time in a small propeller aircraft.

After some training on the ground, Ms Gilkes soon took to the skies for a lunchtime flight.

"When Frances said she wanted to fly a plane we knew we had to make her dream a reality," general manager at Seccombe Court Wojciech Kuczkowski said.

"Our Wishing Tree initiative is a wonderful way for residents to share their ambitions and it's hugely rewarding to be able to make these a reality. We are thrilled to have helped Frances complete her lifelong wish and it was wonderful to see the smile on her face as she landed after her flight.

"I cannot wait to see what wish we organise next - the sky really is the limit."