Prince George's first UK engagement puts him in the cockpit: 'Mummy, can I fly now?'

By Gemma Strong

Prince George loves airplanes just like any little boy, but the royal toddler was treated to a very unique experience on his first official engagement in the UK. While attending the Royal International Air Tattoo on Friday (July 8), the two-year-old was visibly thrilled as he and his proud parents, Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton, spent time at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire.

TAP TO VIEW GALLERYPrince George in the cockpit of a red jet Prince George in the cockpit

The adorable toddler was dressed for his big day in a white polo shirt, smart blue shorts and matching shoes. He arrived with his parents shortly before midday, and as he emerged from the family Range Rover initially seemed a little overwhelmed – but mum Kate was on hand to give a reassuring cuddle.

After taking in his surroundings, George excitedly started to point out aircraft, and seemed eager to go over and see the planes and helicopters. His wish was soon granted. The little Prince was handed his very own pair of ear defenders, and went for a closer inspection with his parents.

Prince George with mom and dad in a helicopter Prince George looked thrilled as he attended his first UK engagement

George was led up the ladder of one of the RAF Aerobatic Team's Red Arrow Hawks by helicopter pilot William, and even had the chance to sit in the cockpit. "Mummy, can I fly the Red Arrow now?" he asked Kate, with William gently telling him, "Not right now."

The family then walked across the airfield to see inside a Squirrel helicopter – the same aircraft William trained upon while based at RAF Shawbury in 2009.

The outing marked Prince George's first official engagement on home soil, and the crowd at the airshow clamoured to catch a glimpse – and perhaps a photograph – of the little boy. It was also something of an early birthday treat for George, who will celebrate his third birthday on 22 July.

Prince George and his father Prince William watching jets William and George view one of the spectacular Red Arrow Hawk jets

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At just two-years-old, the prince follows in the footsteps of Princess Leonore, Princess Madeleine of Sweden's daughter, who recently carried out her first official event in her duchy, Gotland province, with her mother and father.

Prince George holding his mother's hand The little Prince attended his first ever official engagement in 2014

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George's very first public engagement took place back in April 2014, when he attended a play date in his honour during his parents' tour of Australia and New Zealand.

Prince George holding his mother's hand Prince George looked adorable in blue shorts and a white shirt

Since then, British royal fans have been treated to sightings of the little Prince on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, and, of course, he has appeared in a number of official photos released by the royal family.

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