Holloway helicopter crash pilot died ‘doing what he loved’

Brian Bridgman

Brian Bridgman - Credit: Archant

Family pay tribute to ‘happy chappy’ dad who ‘lived to fly’

Captain Brian Bridgman

Captain Brian Bridgman - Credit: Archant

Tributes have been paid to a Holloway helicopter pilot who died in a crash off the Yorkshire coast last week.

Brian Bridgman, 58, was killed when his helicopter went down near cliffs at Flamborough while travelling from Edinburgh to Retford in Nottinghamshire.

A specialist team of rescuers recovered the bodies of Mr Bridgman, who lived in Roman Way, and his passenger John Kent, 50, who lived in Romford.

The pair were just 30 minutes from Humberside Airport where they were due to refuel.


His two children described him as a “fantastic” dad who was loved by everyone. They said he was a “brilliant” pilot who died doing what he loved.

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“Dad was loved by everyone, he was always smiling, always happy and always positive,” said Katie Bridgman, 31.

“He was a kind happy chappy, and just the perfect person.

“He lived to fly and was doing what he loved.”

Tim Bridgman, his 29-year-old son, said: “My sister and I could not be more proud of our father. He was a fantastic dad and a brilliant pilot.

“Dad was always great company, and had a massive circle of friends.

“He will be hugely missed by everyone he knew, and all those whose lives he touched.”

Mr Bridgman, a former journalist, lived in Holloway for 17 years and his sister Anne said he always loved living in the area.

He had rented his flat out in the last two years and moved to Kent for work, but she said he always intended to return to Islington.

“He loved to fly,” said Ms Bridgman, 56.

“In his flat when we were trying to find address books we found a motto that said ‘find something you would die for and then live for it’.

“He loved his flat, he loved London and he loved Islington.

“We would like to thank all the emergency services for recovering his body and bringing him back to us. They did a brilliant job. So often in these situations bodies aren’t found or turn up much later. We’re very grateful.”

Mr Bridgman’s funeral will take place on Friday, October 3 at 2pm at St Thomas’ Church, Horseshoe Hill, Upshire, Waltham Abbey, EN9 3SS with a wake at the Foresters Arms, 15 Baldwins Hill, Loughton IG10 1SF.