After 30 years as a pilot, Captain Peter Elliott got to fly with a co-pilot he knew more than most.
The pilot, who has clocked up more than 15,500 hours of flying during his career, made a special announcement to passengers travelling from Birmingham to Tenerife to tell them he was flying with his daughter.
Senior First Officer Laura Elliott has been flying for six years but has never before got to work her father who first inspired her to fly when she was 18.Captain Peter Elliott (left) and his daughter Senior First Officer Laura Elliott flew together for the first time
Mr Elliott inspired his daughter (pictured with her father as a child) to take to the skies when she was just 18
'It's a dream come true to be able to fly with my Dad - even if he was still checking up on me,' said Laura of Birmingham in the West Midlands.
The father-daughter pairing at the controls was a fluke but Miss Elliott said she hopes she will be able to fly with her father again before he retires.
It had seemed unlikely the pair would ever co-pilot the same aircraft because Miss Elliott learned to fly on Airbus planes when she joined the company in 2009, and her father flew Boeings.
- PrevioMiss Elliott, 30, became interesting in flying when her father got her a trial flight for her 18th birthday.She said: 'Becoming a pilot was never something I had considered, even though Dad had been a pilot since before I was born.
Mr Elliott told passengers aboard the Airbus that the flight on February 6 was a special one for him
Miss Elliott (pictured in yellow headband) said she had never thought about flying until she went on a trial
'It was only when my Dad bought me trial flight as a birthday present that I got the bug.
'But I was already preparing to go to university so I headed off to study sport and exercise science like I'd always planned.
'It was only when I graduated four years later that I considered following in my Dad's footsteps.
'I applied for a flying course and spent 14 months in southern Spain getting my license and then started with Thomas Cook in 2009.
Miss Elliott has been flying for six years and her father (right) has more than 20 years experience as a pilot
CV: SENIOR OFFICER LAURA ELLIOTT
2006 - Graduated from Birmingham University
2007 - 2008- Training in Spain at Flight Training Europe Jerez
2009 – Joined Thomas Cook as a Cadet
Nov 2011 – Promoted to Senior First Officer at Thomas Cook
Dec 2013 – Went to fly for Monarch for one year
Dec 2014 – Returned to Thomas Cook
CV: TRAINING CAPTAIN PETER ELLIOTT
1977 – Graduated from Manchester University
1979-81 – Flight School training at Hamble Air Training College after working as accountant
1985 - Joined DanAir
1992 - Joined Airtours which became MyTravel and merged with Thomas Cook.
2014 - Retrained to fly an Airbus craft, similar to the craft his daughter flies
Feb 2015 - First flight with his daughterMiss Elliott said her father inspired her to train to become a pilot and her mother had encouraged them both
'Dad and I are really similar - he hadn't planned on being a pilot at the beginning either and was an accountant before but Mum encouraged us both.'
The pair are the first father-daughter team at Thomas Cook, but Miss Elliott said she is not surprised.
She added: 'Female pilots are still very unusual. The airline industry is still a bit of a mystery for some people and nationally just three per cent of pilots are women.'
The pair finally sat in the cockpit together on February 6 and Mr Elliott, who has been a training captain for 23 years, made an announcement to passengers that the flight made it a special day for him as he was flying with his daughter.The father-daughter flying-duo found themselves in the cockpit together because of a quirk in the roster
After a hassle-free flight both said they hoped to fly together again on a Thomas Cook flight in the future
Miss Ellliott added: 'I thought that Dad would have retired by the time I got back to work and so we thought that we'd never get the opportunity.'
But after just a year I went back to work, and in the time away Dad had retrained on the Airbus.
'It was only my second flight back that it just popped up on the rota that we were due to fly together, simply by chance.
'It was quite a surprise because Dad's based in Birmingham and my base is East Midlands Airport, but when we realise I was so pleased I'd finally get to fulfil my wish.'
Miss Elliott said she was initially nervous flying with her father and said it was like going for a driving lesson with him. However the flight went smoothly and both hope to repeat the experience.