UNIVERSITY students aiming for a coveted annual award put on their best performances – a thousand feet up in the sky over Oxfordshire in July 1980.

Young pilots from four University Air Squadrons gave displays of precision and skill in a bid to claim the De Havilland Trophy.

The competition involved the squadrons of Birmingham and the East Midland colleges of Nottingham, Leicester and Loughborough.

It was judged by officers from the RAF’s Central Flying School and the headquarters of RAF Support Command.

Cambridge won the trophy for the second year running.

Presenting the trophy, Air Vice-Marshal Brownlow said: “You may think that throwing an aeroplane around the sky is a bit of fun. Of course it is, but it’s absolutely essential in training young pilots to have perfect confidence in themselves and also in their aircraft.”