Nov 282019

Hello everyone
I’m quoting here from Dave Crowson’s blog yesterday where he said ‘NEWS FLASH; There will be an unusual celestial event Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Wall to wall sunshine, a phenomenon unknown on the Mynd for a number of weeks‘.  So Friday looks like a light northerly, Saturday north easterly and Sunday a very acceptable 10 to 15kt northerly.  After such a long time with very little aviating going on this weekend is a must for going to the club.  Especially as there is the annual Members’ Forum on Saturday evening starting at 1700 (change from what may have been advertised) with the usual excellent dinner afterwards.  (If you want to eat please let Helen or Dave know what you’d like from the menu). The purpose of this forum is to review developments over the last 12 months and what is planned to happen over the next, and an opportunity for the officers and committee to listen to questions and comments from the floor to guide them in the development of strategy for the future.  If you want the committee to reflect the wishes of the membership then you need to attend.  Don’t forget also that there will be a short meeting before hand, starting at 1500 of those interested in helping at either of the two big events at the club next year, namely the VGC Rally and the Olympian Competition.  See you all there.
Your Duty Teams This Weekend:
Saturday:  Chris Alldis (No 1), Dave D’Arcy (TLs), Pete Orchard (winch), Charles Page (LD)
Sunday:  William Brewis (No 1), Walter Baumann (TLs), Pete Orchard (winch), Dave Cole (LD)
Soaring – Chess in the Air
A really interesting article appeared via Facebook this week, shared by the BGA, entitled ‘Does Soaring Have To Be So Dangerous?’.  Originating from America it makes really interesting reading.  I recommend all to have a look by following this link.
Christmas Dinner
The club Christmas Dinner will be held on 14th December.  Please let Helen or Dave know if you intend to be there.  Remember this is when the trophies and awards are presented for achievements this year, and you may be one of them.  Peter Turner, asked me to share the following with you:
Dear members
This year the ‘Social Fund will NOT be holding a Christmas raffle or Bingo to raise funds. Instead there is a wonderful opportunity, at this festive time of year, to help more youth into the air and to enjoy our sport.
The B.G.A. ‘Launchpoint Caroline awards’ have made an appeal for funding to  help to provide financial assistance in getting more Juniors flying and enjoying our wonderful sport. We all know that we must promote the future of gliding and this is a great way to help, to date it has assisted more than 400 youngsters into gliding including several of our own. So we would ask you all to be even more generous than normal this year,  so please dig even deeper into the pocket than usual. A collection will be made during the course of the Xmas meal.
As this is the season of giving,  there will be a ‘FESTIVE’ prize from the social fund to the members. At each place setting will be one numbered ticket and at the end of the meal the Chairman will draw the prize.  Merry Christmas from the Social Fund!
(editor’s note – we are hosting the Juniors Winter Series Round Two on 31 Jan – 2 Feb 2020)
Winter Lecture Series
Chris Gill got us off to a great start last Saturday with an excellent illustrated talk on Soaring in Snowdonia.  It prompted much discussion during his talk and over dinner afterwards about the possibilities of using south east wave and the coastal convergence to make some epic flights in Wales from our own site.  More than 40 people attended.  The next one is on Saturday January 18th 2020 from Afandi Darlington from the Air Accident Investigation Branch.  We all know about the AAIB but here is a chance to find out exactly what they do and how they do it.  Afandi has a long background in gliding (he designed the first winglets for the LS4 which were prototyped on a glider I owned and which worked very well).  I’m sure it will be worth making the  trip to hear him speak.
Photo Caption Competition
Who would have believed it? Two members with exactly the same injury and exactly the same operation on the same day.  I’m sure you will have a suitable caption for this photo.  Let me have them and I’ll publish the best next week.
d130d3cd-7319-429a-a8b1-04450d1834a0Happy landings
Jon Hall


Nov 272019

I am late posting this as I didn’t have any confidence in the timing of all these fronts. I am only slightly more confident now but if I don’t post today it will be “that was the week we had!”.

Thursday: Starts very well, 15knt westerly but deteriorates as an occluded front arrives lunchtime then it  gets miserable as it rains, the wind veers and slackens

NEWS FLASH; There will be an unusual celestial event Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Wall to wall sunshine,a phenomenon unknown on the Mynd for a number of weeks.

Friday:      Sunshine with a light Northerly

Saturday: Sunshine with a strong North Easterly (possibly too strong but don’t discount it)

Sunday:    Sunshine with a 10/15knt Northerly

Don’t forget there will be a members evening on Saturday where you get a chance to voice out loud  all your moans and wish-list for the present and aspirations and hopes for the future. This is a much better forum than the canteen table!

There is also a menu out already for Saturday night so let Helen know if you will want feeding.

Nov 212019

Hi everyone
There have been a whole series of outstanding flights posted this week by Chris Gill flying out of Denbigh and into the Snowdonia wave.  It seems to work in almost any direction.  Yesterday Chris was with Neil Croxford in southerly wave then flew again with Adrian Flower and covered about 400kms all together.  Not bad at the end of November. Capture1
Then he achieved a declared 300k today.Chrisgill
Chris is coming to talk to us as the first of our Winter Lecture series this Saturday starting at 1800 hours.  I have heard Chris talk about Denbigh before and believe me he is not to be missed, so make a point of being there.  If you want to eat afterwards, and why wouldn’t you, contact Helen or Dave on 01588 650405 asap.  They need to know numbers so they can have enough food for everyone.  The menu looks amazing including Mustard Salmon, Braised Beef, Burford Lamb and a vege option for mains.

Llanbedr Expedition 2020
Talking of wave flying in Snowdonia we are organising an expedition to Llanbedr from 21st to 29th of March 2020. Flying Snowdonia National Park is always a fantastic opportunity offering a wide range of flying experiences; high altitude flights in wave, flights around Snowdon and the surrounding peaks and coastal flying.  Currently there is a limited opportunity with only five glider spaces left or available. If you are interested in taking your glider to the Snowdonia Park, single seater or two seater, please email Nigel Lassetter  to confirm your booking. There is a cost of £300.00 per glider for the expedition period.  Launching will be by aerotow behind the Cosford Falke.
For those members interested in flying the Snowdonia peaks in one of the available two-seaters spaces as P2 pilots, please contact Nigel so that we can start a list of interested pilots. There may also be an opportunity to fly in the Cosford K21 under instruction or for a check flight.  Usually if you fly as P2 with a privately owned two seater you are asked to share the cost of the flight.

Jaca Expedition 2020
Clive Crocker is organising a return trip to Santa Cilia for next year.  It looks like it will span three weeks sometime from the middle of May to the middle of June.  Contact Clive for more details.

Help required for Wenlock Christmas Fayre
A reminder that the club will have a presence at the Wenlock Christmas Fayre on Saturday 7th December. This is an excellent event at which to raise the club profile and sell First Flight Experience flights.  Are you available to support this event with your presence?  As it is a long day, just a few hours from several people makes a big difference.  It is also an opportunity to stock up on Christmas presents.  Please contact James Moore.

Accommodation refurbishment
Those of you who have been at the club recently will have seen a considerable amount of work going on to improve the quality of the accommodation block, including changes to the bunk room.  This is happening because we have considerably increased the demand for our private rooms and they represent a very useful contribution to the club’s income over the year.  But the quality of the rooms has not been as good as we would like.  These improvements will bring them up to a much higher standard.  Many people have been involved and I want to thank everyone for their time and considerable effort.  Future plans over this winter include improvements to the briefing room and bar.

Wenlock Olympian Gliding Competition 2020
I’m pleased to report that we already have six entries for the Olympian next year.  As ever we will need a lot of people to help run the competition properly, safely and efficiently as well as making sure ev;eryone has fun.  I shall be directing the competition and John Randall is the primary event organiser.  There will be a short meeting on the afternoon of November 30th, prior to the members’ meeting, starting at 1500 hours, for you to register an interest and let us know how you think you can help.  We also need some help for the VGC Rally taking place shortly before so if you can help with that please come to the meeting.

Club images
Thanks to everyone who has responded to James’ request for quality images of the club and what goes on in it.  We have had some really high quality images but as I am currently reviewing all of the club publications and media at present I am appealing for more.  I could use images of things other than gliders such as the accommodation, inside the hangar, the bar, the briefings, the simulator in use, and of course the catering.  Please let me have anything you have or better still take a camera with you and take some new pics.  Thanks in

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Neal Clements (No 1), Matthew Cook (TLs), Geoff Dailey (winch), Glyn Macarthur (LD)
Sunday:  Simon Adflard (No 1), Mark Jerman (TLs), Geoff Dailey (winch), Liz Adlard (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall

Nov 192019

My OP has been cancelled so I am on this Thursday and Friday. The weather is not the best I have seen but the more optimistic sites have Friday morning as the best.

Thursday; 28-30Knt SE, with high probability of low/orographic cloud.

Friday; 26-28knt (rasp 20knt) Southerly backing SE in the afternoon. Slightly less probability of  low/orographic cloud

Saturday; 25Knt E, Norfolk and chance spring to mind, or Rasp 15Knt ENE a bit more of a chance. High probability of low/orographic cloud.

Sunday; 25+Knt Southerly even higher probability of low cloud.

On the plus side there will be plenty of pictures of very nice weather on Saturday night, on the minus side we had a clerical error with the menu, the Lamb Shank is £9.00 not £8.50 as advertised. If you intend to eat with us it will help if you can order beforehand  phoning Helen 07547434799 or emailing me,

Nov 142019

Hi everyone
I had a look earlier at the club webcams and see that the ground is very wet and waterlogged again.  This prompts me to remind you that we need to look after the airfield over the winter months if it is going to be in good condition next year.  As we all know the problem is that if we create ruts and scars while the ground is wet, when it dries up, those ruts can cause damage to our gliders when launching and landing.  So please remember that when the ground is wet, only drive on it if you have to, only use a four wheel drive vehicle, preferably in low ratio, go slow, don’t brake hard and take wide slow turns.  When moving gliders most of the same applies as well as not using the wheel brake on landing unless you absolutely have to.  A bit of pre-planning during the circuit usually avoids the necessity. If you see any damage or divots try and do a repair.  A bit of prevention over the winter may save you damaging a glider next year.

Your Duty Teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  William Brewis (No 1), Mark Jerman (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch), Jon Hall (LD) – no Trial Lessons
Sunday:  Mark Jerman (No 2), Peter Orchard (winch), Laurant Couval – no Trial Lessons

2019/20 Winter Lectures
Our 2019/20 series of winter lectures starts on Saturday 23rd November with Chris Gill, CFI and adventure pilot at Denbigh GC, showing us what a wonderful place Snowdonia is in which to fly gliders.  Starts at 18:00 followed by the Mynd’s renowed Saturday evening dinner.  You don’t have to be a member to attend, all are welcome.  But if you’d like to eat call the kitchen, or need acconmodation call the office on 01588 650206 before hand.  Weather permitting Chris is intending to fly in with the EuroFox so if you need some aerotow practice he is promising to oblige.  However if the ground is wet and we still have northerly winds it may not be possible as his EuroFox has a tricycle undercarriage.

CAP1220: Operation of experimental aircraft under E conditions
The CAA have just published a revision to CAP1220.  If anyone is interested follow this link

2020 Club Expeditions
Now is the time to be thinking about your gliding ambitions for next year.  There will be expeditions to Llanbedr in Snowdonia in March (contact Nigel Lassiter), to Jaca in the Spanish Pyrenees in June (contact Clive Crocker) and to the Borders GC at Milfield on the edge of the Cheviot Hills, probably in October (contact Richard Bennett or Dave Cole).  Its likely that there will also be trips to Gap in the French Alps during the summer (ask Rob Hanks) and maybe even a trip to Ontur in southern Spain (if you are interested speak to Paul Shuttleworth).

Talking of Spain …
Thanks to Mike Greenwood for sending this link about ‘No more two-hour lunch breaks: the slow death of Spain’s menú del día’.

Motor Glider
Don’t forget that if the cloud base is too low for any meaningful training in a standard glider it may be possible to cover excercises in the motorglider.  The cost of a half hour in the Falke is roughly the same as three 4 minute winch launches and subsequent circuit flights.

Wenlock Christmas Fare
Last year the club attended the Wenlock Christmas Fare and sold several thousand pounds worth of Trial Lessons which helps significantly towards paying for our costs over the winter when we do a lot less flying.  We are going again this year, hopefully to do the same, and need help on the stand.  If you can spare some time on Saturday 7th December please contact James Moore via  He, and I, will be very grateful.

Bronze Theoretical Knowledge Training
Studying for and passing a comprehensive theoretical knowledge test is an important step for all glider pilots.
Like other clubs, the London GC runs a series of Bronze theoretical knowledge training sessions throughout the winter. London GC has offered access to their sessions to pilots from other clubs.
The sessions will be run on Saturday evenings from 11th January to 29th February from 5pm to 7pm. In addition, notes, links to reference material and sample questions are provided online.
To find out more, please contact London GC at Dunstable. Pre-booking is required.

No photo description available.
Meanwhile in NZ …
1800kms at 150 kph!


OLC (1839.64 km – 1728.37 pt – 153.06 km/h)

Happy landings
Jon Hall


Nov 072019

Hi everyone
On Facebook The BGA tells us that the Charity Launch point is struggling for cash.  Running for many years as the Caroline Trust, it has allowed many youngsters at clubs across the country to learn to glide. Some have gone on to become instructors and compete at the highest level. It has made an invaluable contribution to our sport.  As the winter weather draws in think of the money you will save on launches.  If everyone who reads this, contributes one winch launch, or better still one  aerotow, or, if feeling particularly flushed, two of each, we can help make some young person’s Christmas and maybe in a few years they will be the ones helping you from the club house to the cockpit. Just twenty of us will make a difference.  Follow this link to make a donation:

Your Duty Teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Neal Clements (No 1), Mark Jerman (TLs), Peter Salisbury (winch)
Sunday:  Mark Jerman (No 2), Charles Carter (TLs), Peter Salisbury (winch)

2019/20 Winter Lectures
Our 2019/20 series of winter lectures starts on Saturday 23rd November with Chris Gill, CFI and adventure pilot at Denbigh GC, showing us what a wonderful place Snowdonia is in which to fly gliders.  Starts at 18:00 followed by the Mynd’s renowed Saturday evening dinner.  You don’t have to be a member to attend, all are welcome.  But if you’d like to eat call the kitchen, or need acconmodation call the office on 01588 650206 before hand.  Weather permitting Chris is intending to fly in with the EuroFox so if you need some aerotow practice he is promising to oblige.68560910_10219439051583904_5841315630350860288_n

Members Evening
You will be aware that the club has established a members evening, taking place each year, to enable a free discussion with key committee members about the state of the club, its finances, the key projects for the coming year and plans for the future.  The next meeting will take place on Saturday 30th November.  Put it in your diary.

Drone Registration
I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that the CAA are requiring all model aircraft and drones over 0.250kg  and their pilots to be registered.  I know that a lot of our members also fly model aircraft.  If you are one you may and are not  member of a model club you may not be aware that from 30th November 2019 you have to be registered with the CAA to fly an unmanned aerial vehicle over 250 grams. This includes any radio controlled aircraft including model gliders. You have to take an online test and pay a £9 fee.  If you are a member of the BMFA you can pay the £9 with next year’s subscription in December, if you are not a BMFA member you have to register by 30th November.  Further details and the online test are on the CAA website at

Mike Greenwood has the following useful coments:
‘I did the test and got my registration just to see what the process is like.  It was a very simple process, the website is well set out. There are 20 multiple choice questions, the pass rate is 16, you can take the test as often as you like untill you pass. If you read the drone code first at it contains all the answers, if you keep a copy of that window open when you go on to do the test you can just check back on this page if you are not sure of an answer in the test. As a BMFA member you don’t have to do this and pay the £9 until you renew in December/January but you will have to pass the test to get your registration number.  For £9 you get an operator ID valid for 1 year that has to be displayed on all aircraft that you fly over 250 grams, and an Flyer ID valid for 3 years.
You need an operator ID if you own an aircraft that flies, even if someone else always flies it, and it has to be displayed on the aircraft. You need a flyer ID to fly, even if it’s not your aircraft. The owner needs an operator ID, the pilot needs a Flyer ID. Of course in  most cases the flyer is the owner so you need both.  Everyone needs a flyer ID to fly, even children, they have to take the test to be able to fly but it’s free if you only want a flyer ID, so legally anyone who wants to come and have a go learning to fly someone else’s aircraft needs to pass the test and get a flyer ID.’

If anyone needs any help with this send Mike an email.  If you don’t know it send an email to and I will forward it on.

Safety Message from the BGA
We would be grateful if clubs would share the following important detail with all their club pilots including instructors and tug pilots. Please note that even if your club is winch only, your pilots may visit a site that uses aerotowing and therefore will benefit from this information.

If you fly gliders on aerotow or fly towing aircraft, PLEASE read this now.
Personal injury accidents to the glider pilot while aerotowing are rare – but the tug pilot can be killed if the glider gets too high and forces the tug into a vertical dive.
An educational campaign on safe aerotowing followed five fatal tug upset accidents between 1978 and 1985. The fatal accidents stopped and the frequency of tug upset incidents remained at less than one per year until 2008. Since 2009, however, there have been over 3 upsets per year. There were 7 in 2019. Recent tug upsets have included recovery ‘at 40ft’, ‘at 50ft’, and ‘ below the height of pylons’. The increasing rate of tug upset incidents is very concerning.  ALL tugs are vulnerable to an upset but light tugs are more vulnerable. The solution is at the glider end of the rope.
Glider pilot distraction during the tow and failure to check that the release has occurred at the top of a tow are significant factors. Please do not allow yourself to be distracted during the tow, and please check the rope has released before manoeuvring at the top of the tow. Instructors – please ensure that you are prepared to take control before a tow becomes dangerous.
A description of the cumulative hazards and how to mitigate them, including advice for pilots, instructors and tug pilots is at
Thanks for reading this important safety message.

The BGA Safety Team

Happy landings
Jon Hall