Pilot uses plane to draw world's largest Queen Elizabeth portrait

Amal Larhlid flew a Piper PA-28 for two hours in the outline of a side profile of the late queen wearing a crown

Parts of the flight path took pilot Amal Larhlid through restricted airspace and she had to stay in touch with air traffic control throughout. PA
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A pilot has created the world's largest portrait of Queen Elizabeth II using an aircraft to raise money for charity.

Amal Larhlid flew a Piper PA-28 for two hours in the outline of a side profile of the queen wearing a crown, as a tribute to the monarch who died last month and to raise money for Hospice UK.

The flight, tracked on FlightRadar, took place on Thursday and covered 411 kilometres, creating a portrait that is 105km tall and 63km wide.

The profile of the queen covers Oxford, while her crown stretches from Milton Keynes to Warwickshire, with a jewel in the centre directly over Northampton.

Ms Larhlid wrote on her JustGiving fund-raising page: "She was an inspiration to many generations, devoting herself to service for 70 years.

"I do believe in the power of remembrance and appreciation in times like these, and I'll be flying the portrait of Her Late Majesty to pay my respect.

"She will always be in our hearts, and so will our loved ones who left us too."

Ms Larhlid planned her route by converting a portrait of the queen into a format recognised by a flight planning programme called ForeFlight.

She also had a manual back-up of the route made using landmarks, and flew multiple practice flights to get a feel of the required track and turns.

Parts of the flight path took her through restricted airspace and she had to stay in touch with air traffic control throughout.

Despite her planning, bad weather ruined Ms Larhlid's first attempt on Tuesday and left her "gutted".

The rescheduled flight went ahead on Thursday, despite 30-knot winds, and Ms Larhlid told Flightradar24 she had to stay "laser focused on the track" but the challenge was "great fun".

She added the hardest part of the flight had been creating the crown, due to the tight turns.

Having completed her flight, Ms Larhlid's fund-raising page has already received more than £1,000 towards her goal of £5,000.

Queen Elizabeth II's 70-year reign — in pictures

Updated: October 07, 2022, 5:56 PM
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