October 21 - Mandy Pantall from the charity Fly 2 Help was announced as the first recipient of the BACA Humanitarian Award at the organisation's annual awards ceremony.

The Baltic Air Charter Association (BACA) has added a Humanitarian Award to its annual Excellence Awards to recognise the important role played by the air charter industry in the field of emergency and disaster aid as well as charitable activities.

Ms Pantall, who broke her back in a riding accident and has since learned to fly, is part of the team of passionate aviators at Fly 2 Help, a charity committed to "helping others enjoy the inspiration and life enhancing privileges that being in the air can provide."

Other winners announced at BACA's Autumn Lunch and Awards Ceremony at Guildhall, London were:

Best Passenger Charter Airline - Eastern Airways
Best Cargo Charter Airline - Volga-Dnepr Airlines
Best General Aviation Operator - Centreline Air Charter
Best Handling Agent / FBO - TAG Farnborough Airport
The Global Excellence Award - Tyrolean Jet Services

"We are delighted to be able to offer the Humanitarian Award to recognise the great work done by people in the aviation industry both in disaster operations and for charities generally," says BACA Chairman, Dick Gilbert.

DHL sponsored the award with other awards sponsored by Aviation Charter, Chapman Freeborn Airchartering, Direct Air Charters, London Executive Aviation and Air Charter Service, which was also the main event sponsor.

(From Left) : Nicholas Owen (BBC Presenter), Mandy Pantall and Chris Weeks (DHL Director of Humanitarian Affairs)

Photo supplied by Colin Antill - fotoseeker.com