A BASINGSTOKE schoolgirl is celebrating her GCSE results after achieving her highest grade in an exam she sat on the same day she earned her pilot wings.

Elizabeth Ormston, 16, became one of the youngest UK pilots to earn her solo wings just two hours after sitting a two-and-a-half hour GCSE English literature exam.

On the afternoon of May 22 this year, following the exam earlier that morning, Elizabeth flew an Icarus C42 solo around an airfield - just eight days after her 16th birthday.

On Thursday the student, who dreams of becoming a commercial pilot, collected her GCSE results and was delighted to discover her English literature score was her highest (seven).

Elizabeth, a pupil at Kings' School in Winchester, Hampshire, also achieved an impressive seven in English language and passed all of her subjects including photography (seven), maths (six), French (six), geography (six), physics (six), psychology (five), and biology (five).

She will now attend Peter Symonds sixth form college in Winchester where she will study for A levels in biology, psychology, criminology and sociology, before moving on to flight school to become a commercial pilot.

The budding pilot said: 'I'm overwhelmed, it hasn't really sunk in just yet. I'm really surprised with my French result, I did better than I expected - it's good to have that skill for when I fly over to France one day.'

Watched on by parents Lisa, 47, and Andy, 43, Elizabeth, from Basingstoke, Hampshire, earned her wings at Popham Airfield, near Basingstoke, following the English literature exam. And she is glad the day turned out to be an all-round success.

She added: 'I am really pleased with my English literature result. After I sat the exam I went straight to the airfield and did the solo flight, so I forgot about the exam really.

'I'm looking forward to studying for my A levels and then moving on to flight school. I still plan to be a commercial pilot and would hope to become one during my twenties. I'm still training for my full pilot licence which I can be tested for on my 17th birthday in May.'

Trainee pilots are not allowed to fly solo until they are aged 16 - and cannot earn a full pilot license from the Civil Aviation Authority until they are 17.

Elizabeth has now been authorised by the Microlight Aircraft Association to fly unaccompanied near Popham Airfield as she prepares to take her full test.

She added: 'I have known I wanted to be a pilot since I was ten years old, it's all I've wanted to do.'

After passing her test in May, director of AirBourne Aviation Matthew Myatt said: 'I was so proud to see Elizabeth fly solo for the first time, she has flying in her bones.

'She is one of the best young pilots we have here, which is why I had every confidence she would be able to complete the flight despite her age.

'We give most adults about 35 hours of flying time before we allow them to fly solo - but Elizabeth had just 20. She executed the flight perfectly... It is even more impressive that she completed the flight during the stress of her GCSE exams.'