The Hanna Trophy

Awarded for an outstanding contribution to the art of display flying of historic, vintage or modern fighter aircraft.

2023 awarded to:  Paul Stone

Paul Stone is a military and civilian (EASA Cat 1) qualified test pilot who served in the Royal Navy for 20 years followed by 14 years in the defence industry, accumulating over 4700 hours on more than 200 aircraft types. Paul maintains a diverse set of civil test-flying and display flying skills he gained a seaplane rating in 2006 and has owned several light aircraft including a Gyrocopter and currently operates a Vans STONE Paul1RV7. Paul left BAE Systems as a Director in 2019 to refocus on his passion for flight test, displaying vintage aircraft and contribute further to his specialism in VTOL development.

Paul is now employed full time in Germany as an eVTOL test pilot pioneering the next generation of electric air vehicles.  Nonetheless, he continues to be a devoted supporter of General Aviation, having gained a PPL at age 17 before obtaining a driving licence and flying privately throughout his professional career, owning and operated at various times a Luscombe, Cessna 120, Vans RV6, MT03 Gyrocopter and Vans RV7.

As a Royal Navy pilot and Squadron Commander, Paul displayed the Sea Harrier FA2 at overseas air shows and supervised other military pilots displaying the Sea Harrier; he also flew with the Royal Navy Historic Flight, displaying the Sea Hawk and Sea Fury.

While still in the Royal Navy, Paul became the youngest ever pilot to join the Shuttleworth Collection 1996.  Paul has held a CAA Display Authorisation (DA) for over 25 years and is passionate about developing the next generation of display pilots.  As a Display Approval Examiner (DAE) he has mentored and supervised new display pilots to help them gain a DA and find their first display venue. Paul has displayed at a multitude of venues in Great Britain and Northern Ireland, including Old Warden, Duxford, RIAT and Farnborough International air shows.

However, his involvement in display flying extends far beyond the cockpit.  While at BAE SYSTEMS, he was the first ever civilian approved by the Military Aviation Authority to award Public Display Approvals for military fast jet displays – for the Typhoon and Hawk T Mk2.   He STONE Paul2supported the CAA in the development of CAP 406 and CAP 1724, post Shoreham, including the introduction of a more pragmatic method of renewals for the more experienced DA holders.   He also holds a Flying Display Director (FDD) Tier 3 Qualification – the highest level – and acts as FDD at Shuttleworth Air shows.

In 2019, Paul became the Shuttleworth Collection Chief Pilot.  Last year was his fourth year in a role that claims much of his spare time and makes him responsible for 20 volunteer pilots flying over 40 types.  As Chief Pilot, Paul’s notable achievements include:

  • The introduction of a new and benchmark Safety Management System for the collection.
  • Developing and promoting the Tyro display concept adopted by CAA to incentivise display organisers to enrol ab-initio display pilots to fly at their displays, thereby supporting the introduction (injection) of new blood into what was quickly becoming an ageing community.
  • Actively encouraging new talent by providing a safe and nurturing environment for new display pilots to debut at Shuttleworth air shows, with all the support and encouragement they need to break into the display community.
  • Supervising and managing display currency and mitigating skill-fade for 20 pilots flying multiple types.  This enabled Shuttleworth to continue to provide displays post lockdown during the Covid pandemic and to lead the regeneration of air shows during Covid recovery.

Over many years, Paul has made an outstanding personal contribution as a display pilot to air shows in the UK and overseas, flying historic, vintage and modern jet fighter aircraft setting the highest of standards and inspiring others to follow his example.  That contribution is matched by his efforts out of the cockpit towards improving standards and the development of new entrants to the demanding environment of display flying.  Still working as a test pilot, Paul continues to devote his available free time to both tasks.  His exceptional achievements and outstanding contribution make him a worthy recipient of the Hanna Trophy. 

Previous Winners:

2013  John Romain

2014  John Beattie MBE

2015 Squadron Leader Duncan Mason RAF

2016  Flight Lieutenant "Charlie" C V Brown

2017  Brian Smith

2018  Lee Proudfoot

2019  Nigel Lamb

2020  Air Marshal Cliff Spink CB CBE RAF(Retd)

2021  not awarded

2022  Stuart Goldspink

2023  Paul Stone