About Us

Aquila Jet Training is a new company, established in 2019 by William McBarnet, an airline pilot and TRE(examiner) with over 35 years’ experience in aviation.

Pilot development needs to keep pace with the technical innovation of modern aircraft. Aquila Jet Training’s aim is to develop the resilience and expertise of pilots flying modern automated aircraft with engaging and relevant material, delivered by the best experts in their field.

Aquila’s search for expertise has taken us outside the norm. We have looked at resilience and expertise in military contexts, elite sport and performance psychology, to bring new energy to pilot training and development. We are building a network of experts who will help us to move forward. This network will be flexible and diverse, but always promising a fresh look at the modern pilot.

Aquila is also fully engaged with the transformational change promised by Evidence Based Training (EBT). The core principles of Aquila’s ethos are consistent with EBT principles and we will be working with key providers to provide a dynamic perspective as EBT implementation takes place.

Aquila Jet Training is proud to be associated with The Philosophical Breakfast Club (PBC), an organisation that believes in better outcomes for risk industries. The PBC brings together experts, academics and practitioners from the fields of psychology, high performance and change management.

Our Team

William McBarnet

Director and Founder

William started his aviation career in the Royal Air Force in 1983. He served on 47 Squadron flying C130 Hercules worldwide in the tactical support role. This included low level, airdrop and air to air refuelling operations as a ‘combat ready’ captain. William also saw operational service in the First Gulf War in 1990/91.

Following this, William retrained as a helicopter pilot, seeing operational service on 7 Squadron flying Chinook helicopters as a ‘combat ready’ captain. He operated in the South Atlantic, throughout Europe, the Middle East and during the Bosnian conflict in 1995/6.

William retired from the RAF in 1996, joining Airtours International Airways (later MyTravel then Thomas Cook) as a first officer on the Airbus A320, promoted to captain in 1999. During a downturn in business for Thomas Cook, William took a career break and joined Qatar Airways in 2012 where he became a line training captain then a TRI.

Returning briefly to Thomas Cook in 2016, he took voluntary redundancy in 2018 to become an independent training captain, forming Aquila Jet Training Ltd in 2019.

William has a wealth of professional experience, accumulating over 15 thousand hours flying time in most corners of the world. At home, William has been a keen advocate and fundraiser for various conservation charities and is a keen game angler. He is married with three grown up daughters.

Olivia Hendriks

Psychologist

Olivia is a recent graduate of the University of Liverpool and Newcastle University, where she achieved a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Psychology and a Master of Science in Clinical Psychology. Since graduating from her Master’s degree, Olivia has had an original research paper published in a peer-reviewed and well established scientific journal, and has another one currently under review.

Olivia currently works for the NHS as a therapist, specialising in psychological interventions based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Olivia wishes to go on to complete a doctorate in clinical psychology to become a qualified clinical psychologist.

William McBarnet

Director and Founder

William started his aviation career in the Royal Air Force in 1983. He served on 47 Squadron flying C130 Hercules worldwide in the tactical support role. This included low level, airdrop and air to air refuelling operations as a ‘combat ready’ captain. William also saw operational service in the First Gulf War in 1990/91.

Following this, William retrained as a helicopter pilot, seeing operational service on 7 Squadron flying Chinook helicopters as a ‘combat ready’ captain. He operated in the South Atlantic, throughout Europe, the Middle East and during the Bosnian conflict in 1995/6.

William retired from the RAF in 1996, joining Airtours International Airways (later MyTravel then Thomas Cook) as a first officer on the Airbus A320, promoted to captain in 1999. During a downturn in business for Thomas Cook, William took a career break and joined Qatar Airways in 2012 where he became a line training captain then a TRI.

Returning briefly to Thomas Cook in 2016, he took voluntary redundancy in 2018 to become an independent training captain, forming Aquila Jet Training Ltd in 2019.

William has a wealth of professional experience, accumulating over 15 thousand hours flying time in most corners of the world. At home, William has been a keen advocate and fundraiser for various conservation charities and is a keen game angler. He is married with three grown up daughters.

Olivia hendriks

Psychologist

Olivia is a recent graduate of the University of Liverpool and Newcastle University, where she achieved a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Psychology and a Master of Science in Clinical Psychology. Since graduating from her Master’s degree, Olivia has had an original research paper published in a peer-reviewed and well established scientific journal, and has another one currently under review.

Olivia currently works for the NHS as a therapist, specialising in psychological interventions based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Olivia wishes to go on to complete a doctorate in clinical psychology to become a qualified clinical psychologist.