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Jon Hall

Mar 202020
 

Hi everyone
The first thing to say is that the Midland Gliding Club is doing everything in its powers to protect the health and safety of its staff and members, whilst trying to make it possible to keep the club open and operating, and for everyone who wants to fly to be able to do so.  However we are faced with considerable challenges and ever developing advice and legislation from the government, which we anticipate will change fast and often.

Because of this we want to make sure that all members receive operational communications from the club.  Consequently for the time being the chairman’s blog will cease and all communications will be by email.  Please make sure that the office has your current email address.

Stay safe and healthy
Jon Hall
Chairman
Midland Gliding Club

 

Mar 132020
 

Hello everyone
Friday the 13th is supposed to be unlucky but as I look out of my window I see streeting Cu with a light WSW wind.  I hope at least some of you are taking advantage and flying today.  The new membership year starts at the end of this month and April has always been a reasonably good flying time so if you aren’t, now is the time to get current and recent and make sure you are in check.  And don’t forget those field landing and navigation exercises in the motor glider.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Nigel Lassetter (No 1),  Matthew Cook (No 2), Geoff Dailey (winch),  Laurent Couval (LD)
Sunday: Guy Hartland (No 1), Matthew Cook (No 2), Denise Hughes (TLs), Geoff Dailey (winch),  Jon Hall (LD)

Annual General Meeting
The club’s Annual General Meeting takes place at the club on the 4th April starting at 1800.  Whilst this is a formal meeting, a requirement of the organisation, to conduct legally required approvals and the appointment of officers and committee members, there is always a members’ forum held after the formal meeting has closed, which enables members to raise questions and make suggestions for the new committee to consider.  I urge you to attend and take part in this discussion, to help move the club forward and to take an active part in formulating the club’s future.  You can’t complain after the event if you don’t like the way things are going and you didn’t take part.
If you want to put forward a resolution pertinent to the business of the AGM, and wish it to be added to the AGM Agenda, it must be received by the club Secretary by the 20th of March at the latest.

Contact details
Any club struggles to maintian accurate contact details for its members as emails, telephone numbers and addresses change.  It really helps if you make a point of going to the office once every year and checking that the details we hold for you are accurate and up to date.  We sometimes hold email addresses in more than one location so it is important that they are the same.

Cross Country Coaching

A reminder that at our club we are fortunate to have a number of very decent two seat gliders.  Two of these, KA and JF, are owned by experienced cross country pilots who have been approved by the CFI to do cross country coaching.  So if you want to experience a cross country flight, try a decent sized task or need some mentoring contact Julian Fack or myself.  KA is part of a syndicate so will not always be available, depending on its use by other syndicate members but if it is a soarable day and I have a seat available I am always willing to share the flight, as is Julian, in our Duo Ts.  There is usually no cost except for paying the launch fee and a contribution to any fuel used.   I am also offering coaching on the club simulator.  Other two seaters are owned by instructors who may also be willing to do some coaching.  Don’t be afraid to ask.

BGA Ladder
I make no apologies about reiterating that if you do any sort of cross country flight away from site, you should upload it to the BGA ladder.  Mark Sanders, our Ladder Steward, calculates scores for our trophy awards at the end of the season from the flights and traces logged to the BGA ladder.  If you drive a glider with an engine you must have a logger that records engine starts or Means of Propulsion (MOP).  More importantly, the BGA uses the the flights logged on the ladder as supporting evidence when defending our airspace.  Shrinking airspace is going to be one of the potentially most damaging influences on the continuance of our sport in the future so it is really, really important.

Government announce UK to leave EASA
The BGA circulated the following:

Many have seen the news item re the UK leaving EASA. I was at a CAA briefing on this topic yesterday.

The UK is leaving EASA on 1 Jan 21. The existing EASA regulation on 31 Dec 20 will be cut and pasted into UK law with no planned changes for 2 years. This is consistent with the no deal plan that’s been in place for some time now. After 1 Jan 21, there may be opportunities to tweak the law. But there’s likely to be a long queue.

So the BGA’s ongoing development of Sailplane Flight Crew Licensing (SFCL) and Declared Training Organisation (DTO) compliant systems needs to continue.

  • Re SFCL, we’re agreeing any necessary conversion tweaks with CAA ahead of 8th April 20, when SFCL comes into force ahead of a requirement to comply by 8 Apr 21. We’ve indicated to CAA that they should expect more conversions towards 8th Apr 21 than 8th Apr 20. So nothing new there.
  • Re DTO, there’s a detailed BGA working plan on paper including, importantly, development of required resources inc course programmes and of course comms with clubs. We’ve advised CAA that the DTO conversion will happen towards the end of 2020. Nothing new there either.

The latest info on licencing will continue to be updated at https://members.gliding.co.uk/pilot-licensing/pilot-licence-conversion/.  Meanwhile, the BGA will continue to use the avenues available to us to achieve the most useful and proportionate outcome for gliding, including re pilot medicals.

Kind regards
Pete Stratten
BGA Chief Executive Officer

Happy landings

Jon Hall
Chairman
MGC

Mar 062020
 

Unfortunately I made a mistake in yesterday’s post about our site’s designation by Sport England as a Significant Area for Sport.
The BGA recomends to Sport England sites which it believes are significant for the sport of gliding.  Sport England then confirms, or denies, the nominations.  Happily we were accepted, but it is in fact the airfield, or our site, not the Long Mynd or the club, that receives the honour.  Sorry about that.
Jon Hall
Chairman

Mar 052020
 

Hello everyone
It’s starting to look a bit like spring at last.  Monday last was a great flying day, probably the day that Dave forecast for Tuesday, which started wet and blowey but cleared up enough to get some flying in the afternoon.  The rest of this week was not great and Saturday looks like a SW wind with low cloud.  Sunday looks better, still SW but a higher cloud base that might allow some ridge lift but a chance of showers around the middle of the day.  But don’t let that put you off because we have Mike Fox, National Coach from the BGA coming to talk to us on Saturday night.  If you would like a meal after please let Helen know beforehand by phoning 01588 650405.  We are also hosting a BGA Club Maintainers Course during the day.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Neal Clements (No 1),  Denise Hughes (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch),  Charles Page (LD)
Sunday:  William Brewis (No 1), , Denise Hughes (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch),  Dave Cole (LD)

Renewing Membership
The new membership year starts at the end of this month.  If you are paying by direct debit you don’t need to do anything but if you prefer to pay the whole amount in one go you can do so anytime from now on.  Don’t forget you will get a new membership card valid from 1st April which will be available from the office after this coming weekend.

BGA Ladder
As we rapidly approach the new soaring season now is a good time to remind all that if you do any sort of cross country flight away from site, please upload it to the BGA ladder.  Mark Sanders, our Ladder Steward, calculates scores for our trophy awards at the end of the season from the flights and traces logged to the BGA ladder.  But perhaps more importantly, the BGA uses the the flights logged on the ladder as supporting evidence when defending our airspace.  It really makes a difference.

Rockpolishers
Dates have now been published for the Rockpolishers events this year.  If you are interested in competing or crewing all the details are available by clicking here.

SASP
I am delighted to report that our airfield, or rather the Long Mynd, has been recognised as a nationally Significant Area for Sport because of the high quality of the site as a significant gliding centre and the unique and challenging activities that the site enables.  Another feather in the cap!

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Feb 272020
 

Hello everyone,
Well this weekend is not looking too great though Sunday might be OK.  Friday and Saturday have very limited prospects but the models differ considerably on what Sunday will bring.  Worth keeping an eye on the forecasts though as it might turn out OK.  The BGA conference takes place at the Nottingham Belfry on Saturday.  Might be a better bet!

CHIRP
There are some intersting articles in the February edition of CHIRP, not aimed directly at gliding but with relevance nontheless.  Worth having a look by clicking here.  For those who of you who haven’t the time this is an extract:

‘Several reports in this Edition of FEEDBACK concern actual or very near infringements of Controlled Airspace (CAS) and 1 report is about aircraft flying through a NOTAMed display area. The reports contain a variety of factors and lessons identified including planning and distraction. However, increasingly common is the role of electronic devices in infringements. Correctly used, these devices are a boon that aid planning and reduce the possibility of infringements; incorrectly used or when not working as expected they can sap capacity and draw attention away from lookout and accurate navigation. The lessons from these and many other reports are that:
• Notwithstanding the vital importance of reading NOTAMs before every flight, planning using correctly configured electronic apps will highlight relevant warnings and restrictions along the route and eliminate the possibility of overlooking or mis-plotting NOTAMs.
• As per the ‘Take 2 Initiative’, it is good practice to plan to avoid CAS by a minimum of 2nm and 200ft where possible to provide a margin for error/distraction.
• Sunlight can make electronic tablets difficult to read so invest in a sunlight filter and ensure the device is set to provide audio alarms; turn the volume to maximum before taking off. Paper charts are easy to read in bright sunlight.
• When an electronic device has some sort of hiccup or failure, don’t spend more than a few seconds trying to correct it. Go reversionary! Use either the paper chart or a back-up electronic device.

Infringements bring the GA community (and gliding) into disrepute. We can and we must do everything we can to minimise the number of times it happens.’

Public engagement on the criteria for assessing and accepting the Airspace Change Masterplan
As part of the CAA’s Airspace Modernisation Strategy, CAA and the Department for Transport (DfT), have commissioned NERL to establish an impartial team known as the Airspace Change Organising Group (ACOG) to lead the programme to create a coordinated implementation plan for airspace changes in Southern UK. This is being referred to as the Masterplan for short.  The CAA is seeking your views on the criteria that it will use to determine whether to accept the Airspace Change Masterplan into the Airspace Modernisation Strategy.  See the CAA’s public engagement exercise consultations.caa.co.uk/policy-development/airspace-change-masterplan-criteria for more information and respond online before 27 March 2020.

Winter Lecture Series 7th March 2020
The next lecture in our Winter Series is by Mike Fox – “A return to Kitty Hawk”.  Don’t miss it.  The one after is on 21st March by Simon Adlard giving us all an insight into being on the other end of the winch cable.

2020 Annual General Meeting
This year’s AGM is scheduled for the 4th April, in the club house, starting at 1800.  Note there will be a Charity Walk using the Permissive Way all day.  All committee and officer roles are up for election.  If you are not yet aware, all of our events are listed on the club web site.  It is worth visiting the events page every so often to keep up to date.  Click here for the link.

Briefing Room
You will have noticed that there are works going on to significantly improve the quality and technical ability for presentations in the briefing room.  This is part of a larger programme to improve club faclities and make us look and act more professionally.  If we are to attract new members, expeditions and course members we must present a more professional face.  As a result of the improvements your committee is asking that you remove all personal belongings from the briefing room and ensure that you do not leave any belongings or equipment there.  If you want to use the briefing room for any purpose when it is not in use for briefings, meetings or ground school, you are expected check beforehand that it is not needed and to remove any belongings and equipment immediately after, leaving the space as found so that it can readily be used with a large group.  If you fail to do so, anything left in the briefng room will be removed.  If you need to use the briefing room for its intended purpose and there is stuff in the way feel free to move it out.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Chris Alldis (No 1),  Mark Jerman (TLs), Stephen Alexander (winch),
Sunday:  Mike Witton (No 1), Mark Jerman (No 2), Mark Wakem (TLs), Stephen Alexander (winch),  Glyn Macarthur (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Feb 202020
 

Hi everyone
I hope those of you living in Shropshire, Herefordshire or Wales have managed not to be drowned over the last week.  Fortunately I live in a fairly elevated location but I have never seen the River Severn so high.  If it stops raining long enough to fly tomorrow, and the wind stays within tolerable limits, it looks like a good wave day right across Wales.  Ripe for the first cross country of the year?

Capture

 

Winter Lecture Series 7th March 2020
The next lecture in our Winter Series is by Mike Fox – “A return to Kitty Hawk”.  Don’t miss it.  The one after is on 21st March by Simon Adlard giving us all an insight into being on the other end of the winch cable.

2020 Annual General Meeting
This year’s AGM is scheduled for the 4th April, in the club house, starting at 1800.  Note there will be a Charity Walk using the Permissive Way all day.  If you are not yet aware all of our events are listed on the club web site.  It is worth visiting every so often to keep up to date.  Click here for the link.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Steve Male (No 1),  Matthew Cook (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch), David Cole (LD)
Sunday:  Mark Sanders (No 1), Matthew Cook (No 2), Dave D’Arcy (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch),  Laurent Couval (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Feb 132020
 

Hi everyone
My apologies for not posting last week but struck down with the winter lurgy.  Mostly recovered now, thanks for asking.
Weekend before last we hosted the Junior Winter Series, organised by the BGA Junior Gliding team, notably Lucy Wooton.  We had about a hundred people, including instructors and coaches from many clubs and 13 gliders.  Friday was unflyable but in spite of very strong winds we flew most of Saturday and all day Sunday, achieving more than 100 short west launches over the two days, which may be a record.  Many, many thanks to all the club members who spent long hours at the launch point making sure that our visitors had a great time and to Helen, Dave and their helpers who managed to feed them all in great style.  Supporting the Juniors is important for all clubs if we are to ensure that our sport continues to thrive in the future.
This week we have had some good flying days and thanks to Mark Sanders we have had enough people on the ground to drive winches and run the launch point.  Today looked a bit like a cross country day so time to get back into action.

Winter Lecture Series 7th March 2020
Many thanks to Richard Head for treating us to an excellent talk on his life in the RAF last Saturday.  The next one is on Saturday 7th March at 1800 in the clubhouse.  We are enormously privileged to have Mike Fox talking to us.  All the talks so far have been absolutely brilliant and this one will be no exception.  Mike is no stranger to our club, he is the BGA National Coach, his knowledge about gliding is unparalled and for this talk he is going to describe an amazing gliding trip he did in 2003.  “A return to Kitty Hawk”, a US glider race from West Coast to East Coast USA.  Mike flew with George Moffat.  This is a type of flying very few of us will be able to achieve and it will be fantastic to hear the stories from the expedition.  If time allows  then Mike is also going to be able to help us out with any gliding related queries as well.  Come up for the talk, book a meal and enjoy the social side of the MGC.  As usual there will be a small charge with the proceeds helping to pay costs.

Caravan Applications for 2020-21
ANY member who wishes to keep a caravan at the club must complete the application form and return it to the office, together with the appropriate fee, no later than 6th March 2020. Applications will be considered at the Committee meeting in March.  If you don’t make an application there may not be a space available if demand exceeds supply.  We have a limited number of spaces legally available and cannot magic up more if we wish.

More from the BGA
I received the following from the BGA this week:
‘As you know, the BGA has utilised pilot medical declarations for decades. Indeed, the NPPL and more recently CAA Pilot Medical Declaration standard are based on that successful and proportionate approach to recreational pilot fitness, which was championed for some 50 years by the retired BGA medical advisor, Dr Peter Saundby. Pilot medical declarations are a proven effective control.
As you’ll also be aware, EASA pilot licensing rules result in pilots of EASA sailplanes including powered sailplanes and TMGs needing to hold a licence and medical certificate by 8 Apr 21.
The current exemption allowing pilots of EASA aeroplanes to use LAPL privileges with a pilot medical declaration ends in Apr 20 resulting in all pilots of EASA aeroplanes being required to hold an EASA medical certificate from 8 Apr 20.
With all of the above in mind, at the back end of 2019 the BGA wrote to the Secretary of State for Transport seeking the continued use of UK pilot medical declarations for pilots of all recreational EASA aircraft after Apr 20. At our invitation, the BBAC (balloons) and LAA (light aeroplanes) were co-signatories to the letter. We know that the subject is currently generating activity both in DfT and CAA. Whilst there is no guarantee that our request will result in the right outcome, we are being listened to.
For your interest, I have attached a response from the Aviation Minister. (see below)
We’ll keep you up to date as we hear more.
Pete Stratten’
Click here to see the DfT PMD response

MGC Annual General Meeting
The next Annual General Meeting of the Midland Gliding CLub will be held on 4th April at the club.  The business of the AGM is to (taken from the club rule book) :
19.3.1 confirm the minutes of the previous Annual General Meeting;
19.3.2 receive and adopt the revenue account and balance sheet for the previous year;
19.3.3 elect an auditor for the following year;
19.3.4 elect the executive officers of the Club and the general members of the Committee;
19.3.5 appoint any honorary officers: and
19.3.6 transact any other business which is proper to an Annual General Meeting.
At this meeting all the positions on the committee are up for election so if you want to get involved and help the club management make the right decisions for the future benefit of the club and its members, and you are a full member, you need to put in a nomination form, available from the office, proposed and seconded by two other full members, not less than 3 hours before the AGM starts.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Guy Hartland (No 1),  Mark Jerman (No 2),  Dave D’Arcy (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch), Glyn Macarthur (LD)
Sunday:  Nigel Lassetter (No 1), Mark Jerman (No 2), Mark Wakeham (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch),  Charles Page (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Jan 302020
 

Hello everyone
Looking at the webcams just now I can see that the cloud still hasn’t cleared the hill top and it looks like it may stay that way all day.  However the weekend forecasts seem to suggest a steadily improving situation with the wind southerly today and then getting gradually more westerly as the weekend progresses.  So assuming the cloud lifts sufficiently, and it should, it could be a good weekend for our Junior visitors.  There will be a lot of them around so any help on the ground and in organising the airfield will be especially welcome.  Lets show them what a great club we have.

Winter Lecture Series Saturday 8th February 2020
The next lecture in our Winter Series is by one of our own members Richard Head, about his life in the RAF.
Richard Head is a relatively new member at the Mynd and has a long and distinguished flying career, starting with the ATC gliding and ending with gliding at the Mynd  In between he has enjoyed 10 years on Vulcan bombers, helicopters and instructing.  Richard has done more than most of us combined and we are extremely privileged to be able to enjoy his experiences and also, hopefully, learn some valuable lessons.  Lets make it another full house, stay for dinner after and maybe fly the following day.

Llanbedr Expedition 21-29 March 2020
Anybody looking for accommodation for the Llanbedr expedition?  Nigel Lassitter and myself have booked a very comfortable Lodge in the village and have a spare bedroom available from Saturday to Saturday at a cost of £140 for the week.  Email me at chairman@midlandgliding.club.

Insurance
As you’ll be aware, aviation insurance markets are hardening and the effects are being felt by many aircraft owners when renewing their premiums. As you’d expect, insurers are particularly focussed on losses. It would be unfortunate to have an insurance claim turned down because of a technicality.
It goes without saying that pilots should operate their aircraft legally and within the limits described in the relevant insurance policy. As ever, it is important to read and understand an insurance policy, and if in doubt to discuss the detail with a qualified insurance broker.
It is even more important that the pilot in command (PIC) of a glider or other aircraft is aware of the limitations described in the aircraft flight manual (AFM). For example, some two-seat aircraft AFMs describe limitations re which seat should be occupied by the pilot in command under specific circumstances. Clear examples include the various Duo Discus derivative AFMs.

VGC National Rally 23-30 May 2020
We are hosting the VGC National Rally at the Mynd this year and this is a great opportunity for our members intending to fly in the Olympian competition to get in some practice in their wooden gliders beforehand.  Those of us that fly both wood and plastic (I don’t any longer but started on Skylarks) will know that the lower performance of the wooden glider requires a very different approach to flight planning and completing a task.  During the VGC Rally we will be setting tasks on all suitable days and there will be plenty of willing people around to help with retrieves if needed.  So why not register to attend the rally and blow the cobwebs out of your pride and joy.

BGA Conference and AGM
The BGA AGM will be held on the afternoon of Saturday 29th February 2020 at the Nottingham Belfry Hotel.  If you haven’t been to a BGA Conference or AGM before I highly recommend it as a place to meet lots of other glider pilots, talk with people from other clubs, learn what the BGA does and is doing right now to protect our flying interests and to see all the latest stuff in the trade show as well as new glider types on display.  It costs nothing to attend and there is usually a goody bag on registration.  I will be attending in order to vote on behalf of our members at the AGM.  I have available copies of the Agenda, the Minutes of the 2019 AGM, the BGA Annual Report, the BGA Final Accounts, the budget for 2020-21 and a proposed change to the Operational Regulations concerning Passenger Flying.  If you would like to see any of them you can obtain them from the BGA or drop me an email at chairman@midlandgliding.club and I will forward copies on to you.

Pilot medicals 
I received the following from the BGA a few days ago and think it worth reproducing here:

‘As you will be aware, all qualified glider pilots flying EASA sailplanes including powered sailplanes (which include TMGs) will be required by law to hold an EASA pilots licence and medical certificate from 8 April 2021. We currently expect this to remain the case regardless of the terms under which the UK leaves the EU. We are planning accordingly.  While the new sailplane licensing rules are reasonably straightforward, the LAPL or class 2 medical certificate requirement is a key issue. Whilst many pilots may choose to hold a medical certificate, the BGA and the CAA recognise that the requirement is proven to be disproportionate for air sport and therefore promote and support the use of medical self-declaration where possible.
Supported by other potentially impacted air sport organisations, the BGA has written to the Department for Transport laying out why the UK CAA self-declaration medical standard to driving licence standards and associated exemption from EASA medical requirements should be extended to the thousands of pilots of all recreational EASA aircraft including sailplanes operating in the UK through 2021 and beyond. There is dialogue underway and currently no certainty regarding the outcome.
Meanwhile, to support further justification of continued medical self-declaration, our STRONG recommendation is that all glider pilots including those with a class 2 or LAPL medical consider and if they are able to, sign up to the CAA’s pilot medical online self declaration process. This is a straightforward process and is free. Although the declaration doesn’t specify aircraft category (eg glider, aeroplane, etc) and it can be confusing which box to tick, the key point is to make the declaration if able to. If in doubt tick NPPL. This doesn’t impact on the current BGA medical requirements which until 2021 should remain as they are. By making the one-off declaration, pilots may potentially future-proof themselves against change.
The CAA self-dclaration medical portal is here
We would be grateful if you would pass this information to all your club pilots and encourage participation.’

In addition I would recommend that every one of us writes to out MP telling them how such a decision will impact on our individual flying prospects and lobbying hard that they support the CAA’s Self Declaration policy.  Lobbying does make a difference if enough people take up the cause.  If you think, as I do, that this change may prevent you from flying after April 2021, or create sufficient hurdles that you may consider giving up the sport, tell your MP.

Wenlock Olympian Games – Gliding 13-17 July 2020
We have 13 entries so far for the Olympian competition later this year and thanks to all of our members who heeded my recent encouragement to get registered.  But there are still a few of you out there that haven’t.  What are you waiting for?  If you have registered you should have received an email inviting you to pay the entry fee via SagePay.  If you haven’t please let the office, and me, know.  If you have please pay.  It’s very hard to plan without having a firm idea of the firm entry numbers.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Chris Alldis (No 1),  Matthew Cook (No 2), Ed Jones (winch), Charles Page (LD)
Sunday:  William Brewis (No 1), Matthew Cook (No 2), Ed Jones (winch),  Dave Cole (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Jan 242020
 

Hi everyone
Not a lot happening at this time of the year so this may be another shortish post.  The weather has been unhelpful lately.  I was at the club yesterday and had to drive through low and thick cloud to get there.  Looking at the webcams today it doesn’t look much better.  But at least it allows us to get on with the many maintenance jobs that need doing over the winter.  Dave C is getting on with the simulator refurb and I see someone has been filling holes in the road.  Thanks to all who pitch in and help.  Its hard to determine exactly what the weather will do this weekend.  Some models look as though there will be more low cloud while others suggest we might be right on the edge of it and the hill could be clear.  Suggest your best bet is to go and have a look 😊

Winter Lectures
The last lecture was by Afandi Darlington from the AAIB and he played to pretty much a full house.  He delivered a fascinating and informative discourse on what the AAIB do and how they do it.  The next lecture is on February 8th at 1800 by Richard Head – ‘My Life in the RAF’.

Junior Gliding Winter Series
The Juniors will be with us from Thursday next week until Sunday.  There has been much onterest in this event and we will have pretty much a full house all weekend.  There will of course be club flying at the same time but we will need much help on the ground so if you can spare a few hours to help at the launch point it will be greatly appreciated.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Mark Sanders (No 1),  David D’Arcy (TLs), Simon Adlard (winch), John O’Reilly (LD)
Sunday:  Mike Witton (No 1), David D’Arcy (TLs), Simon Adlard (winch),  Glyn Macarthur (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Jan 192020
 

?

Entries are coming in fast now, including some from Mynd members who are proud owners of vintage aircraft.  But don’t forget the club has two K13s and a K8 that are eligible to enter so why not use one of them to have a go.  There is also a T21 though we haven’t yet received an entry for it.  The event is run as a normal competition but inevitably with smaller tasks, even though in lower performance machines they will still be a challenge.  There will be lots of people around so field retrieves should be a doddle.  If you need some cross country or competition experience find a Mynd instructor or competent cross country pilot and book a club machine together and give it a go.  Great way to dip a toe.  For more detailed information go to olympiangliding.com.  And of course a chance to win an Olympian medal for gliding, the only ones available anywhere in the world!

Jon Hall
Competition Director

Jan 162020
 

Hello all
I received the following today from the BGA and I think it worth repeating here:

‘As you will be aware, all qualified glider pilots flying EASA sailplanes including powered sailplanes (which include TMGs) will be required by law to hold an EASA pilots licence and medical certificate from 8 April 2021. We currently expect this to remain the case regardless of the terms under which the UK leaves the EU. We are planning accordingly.
While the new sailplane licensing rules are reasonably straightforward, the LAPL or class 2 medical certificate requirement is a key issue. Whilst many pilots may choose to hold a medical certificate, the BGA and the CAA recognise that the requirement is proven to be disproportionate for air sport and therefore promote and support the use of medical self-declaration where possible.
Supported by other potentially impacted air sport organisations, the BGA has written to the Department for Transport laying out why the UK CAA self-declaration medical standard to driving licence standards and associated exemption from EASA medical requirements should be extended to the thousands of pilots of all recreational EASA aircraft including sailplanes operating in the UK through 2021 and beyond. There is dialogue underway and currently no certainty regarding the outcome.
Meanwhile, to support further justification of continued medical self-declaration, our STRONG recommendation is that all glider pilots including those with a class 2 or LAPL medical consider and if they are able to, sign up to the CAA’s pilot medical online self declaration process. This is a straightforward process and is free. Although the declaration doesn’t specify aircraft category (eg glider, aeroplane, etc) and it can be confusing which box to tick, the key point is to make the declaration if able to. If in doubt tick NPPL. This doesn’t impact on the current BGA medical requirements which until 2021 should remain as they are. By making the one-off declaration, pilots may potentially future-proof themselves against change.
The CAA self-dclaration medical portal is here
We would be grateful if you would pass this information to all your club pilots and encourage participation.’

Wenlock Olympian Games Gliding
As of today we have six entries for the Olympian competition, most of them from abroad but it is noticable that there are no entries on the list from our own club.  I can’t believe that no one from the Mynd is interested so I am asking that if you are considering an entry you do it now via the online entry form.  Having lots of entries encourages more.  Click here to go to the website and follow the link from there.  No payment is required at the time of entry.  You wil receive a digital invoice sometime after where you can pay online via Sage Pay, our secure online payment portal.  It would be a great shame to have to cancel the event for lack of entries as it is entirely unique in the gliding calendar worldwide and brings a lot of attention and revenue to the club, which we all know we need.  Even if you are not sure you can cancel before the middle of May and get a full refund.  If we have to cancel again this year it is highly unlikely that this event will ever happen again.

Airspace Classification Review
Back to the BGA.  Following on from the APPG-GA instigated Kirkhope Inquiry into Lower Airspace, which highlighted many of the challenges associated with unecessarily restricted airspace, the Govt has directed the CAA to regularly review airspace classifications including consultation with airspace users, and where appropriate amend the classification using (new) procedures developed by the CAA.
The CAA has launched an airspace classification review consultation that closes on 3 Mar 2020.
The BGA believes this is an opportunity. The airspace committee has met to discuss the potential BGA response. Its representatives have also attended a CAA stakeholder engagement meeting that described the consultation and the likely steps following the consultation. They have highlighted to CAA the very limited scope of data supplied in the consultation and the potential impact that will have on the consultation. It was clear from the stakeholder meeting that CAA will only be looking in any detail at those volumes of controlled airspace that are the focus of multiple responses.
The BGA believes that it will need to seek club pilots support in responding to this consultation. As such, around mid-February, it anticipates sharing some information that pilots will be encouraged to use to form their own responses in time for the 3rd March.
The consultation can be viewed here 

Winter Lecture Series
Don’t forget the next lecture is this Saturday 18th January by Afandi Darlington.  Afandi is a senior inspector at the AAIB.  He holds a PPL(A) and is a keen and experienced glider pilot.  He holds a first class degree in Aeronautical Engineering and will be covering why the AAIB investigate accidents and serious incidents, the legal framework they operate within and some examples from GA and the commercial world.  We are immensely privileged in having such a distinguished speaker and I urge you to come along, support your club, learn more about aviation and have a flight and meal as well.  The talk will start at 1800 and there will be the usual request for contributions to the Social Fund to cover costs.  The next one is on the 8th February by Richard Head – ‘My Life in the RAF’ and trhe final one of the series this year on 7th March from Simoan Adlard and Mike Fox on the latest news from the BGA, especially winching.

The Juniors are coming
I’m delighted to see the response to the Juniors Winter Series weekend at the Mynd (30th January to 2nd February) has been remarkable with more registered entries than have ever supported one of their Winter Series weekends at any site in the UK ever.  This is a testament to the burgeoning interest in Junior Gliding and especially their interest in our club.  These are the people who will go away and tell their friends and club members what a great time they had with us and that will encourage more visitors and maybe even more members.  In the correspondence I have had with the organisers they have mentioned several times how much the Juniors like our club, the people and how welcoming we are.  I hope this year will be no different.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Neal Clements (No 1), Mark Jerman (No 2), Charles Carter (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch), Dave Cole (LD)
Sunday:  Steve Male (No 1), Mark Jerman (No 2), Charles Carter (TLs), Peter Orchard (winch), Laurent Couval (LD)

The next few days
I am unashamed at repeating DC’s recent blog post here about flying over the next few days.
Friday – Probably the best, 20knt WSW (or just north of west depending on which site you look at). The warmest day with a reasonable amount of sun
Saturday – 15knt NW.  A little less warm but a nice day a good amount of sun and some cummulus
Sunday – 5-10knt NNE backing NW and reducing in strength. The coldest with much less sun in the afternoon with possible orographic and canopy misting to finish the day
So, yet again three flyable days, if there are any instructors willing to help on Friday I am sure there will be people to fly.

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Jan 092020
 

Hi everyone
Just a quick one today as much club stuff to do and not enough time!  As Dave C pointed out Friday should have a good amount of sunshine and a light westerly 10knts or so backing  southwesterly but Saturday doesn’t look great.  However there are always things need doing around the club so if you want to get out of the house for a while ….
Sunday, a bit of a mixed picture but blipspot likes it. Plenty of sun with 20 knts between W & WSW.  So the ridge should give you some fun.

Winter Lecture Series Saturday 18th January 2020
Don’t forget the next lecture is on Saturday 18th January by Afandi Darlington.  Afandi is a senior inspector at the AAIB.  He holds a PPL(A) and is a keen and experienced glider pilot.  He holds a first class degree in Aeronautical Engineering and will be covering why the AAIB investigate accidents and serious incidents, the legal framework they operate within and some examples from GA and the commercial world.  We are immensely privileged in having such a distinguished speaker and I urge you to come along, support your club, learn more about aviation and have a flight and meal as well.  As Sunday is likely to be flyable why not stay over.  The talk will start at 1800 and there will be the usual request for contributions to the Social Fund to cover costs.  The next one is on the 8th February by Richard Head – ‘My Life in the RAF’ and trhe final one of the series this year on 7th March from Simoan Adlard and Mike Fox on the latest news from the BGA, especially winching.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Guy Hartlands (No 1), Matthew Cook (No 2), Mark Wakeham (TLs), Geoff Dailey (winch)
Sunday:  Matthew Cook (No 2), Mark Wakeham (TLs), Geoff Dailey (winch)

Junior Gliding Winter Series
The Juniors are with us again over the weekend from 30th January to 2nd February.  Its always good fun when they come to the club and whatever the weather I can guarantee if there is any chance of flying there will be lots of it.  We always need help on the ground when we have visitors so if you can spare a bit of time to drive a retrieve winch or help marshal the launch queue please do.

Instructor Meeting
The next instructor meeting is on Saturday 15th February at 1730 at the club.

Llanbedr Expedition
The glider list for the Llanbedr expedition is now full but there will be some opportunity to fly with our and other instructors and coaches in a range of gliders from K21, Twin Astir and Duo Discus.  If you fancy a day or two get in touch with Nigel Lassitter.Anyone who has been followign Chris Gill’s exploits from Denbigh on FaceBook will know that the wave in Snowdonia is excellent and apparently there all the time.  Don’t miss it.

CAA Airspace Classification Review
On 30 October 2019 the Secretary of State for Transport wrote to the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to amend the 2017 Air Navigation Directions to give them a new requirement to review the classification of airspace.  The CAA is now beginning the first airspace classification review and they would like your help. Click here to see its consultation for more information and respond online before 3 March 2020.  However the BGA are considering this very carefully as it will inevitable affect the soaring community so it recomends not responding until it publishes to us its recomendations.

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

Jan 022020
 

Hello everyone and wishing you all a very happy and successful year ahead.
We suffered significantly last year at the hands of the weather so I’m hoping this year will prove to be significantly better, enabling us to fly on more days and maximise the use of the fleet.  Full utilisation of our resources, physical and human, is the key to the club being viable.  The committee spent a lot of last year putting strategies in place to make sure that the fleet not only meets the needs of the club but is serviceable all of the time.  The same applies to the launch equipment and vehicles which had suffered from lack of investment and attention over quite some time, but is now subject to a maintenace programme that should sort it out.  My thanks to Andy Holmes, Guy Hartland and Julian Fack for driving this.
The members forum at the end of November last year was adamant that we should end bookable training slots at the weekend and your committee is busy considering how to implement such changes.  We will be publishing clear guidelines on how things will work before the AGM this year.
Over the winter months much work goes on behind the scenes to keep the club at the forefront of gliding in the UK.  This winter we have made changes to the accommodation block which we expect to increase utilisation and revenue, and made general improvements to the presentation of the rooms.  Many people have been involved so thanks are due to everyone who has had an input.  Other significant work will take place over the next three months to improve the briefing room, the simulator room, the internet access and our IT and computer systems including dedicated computer equipment for the instructors, new computers in the briefing room and office and a major upgrade to Aerolog that will bring many new online benefits to members wishing to access their data as well as improving our marketing capability.
At the same time, thanks to Dawn and Guy Hartland, we have undertaken a thorough and deep clean of the clubhouse to make sure it is in the best shape it can be for the start of the new year.  I hope that we will all remember how much hard work has gone into doing this and help to keep the club clean, tidy, presentable and hygenic in the future.
It is easy to sit at home during the winter and imagine doing some flying instead of getting out there and committing aviation.  This weekend looks like a good start to your gliding year with Friday and Saturday looking like excellent ridge days with a chance of some decent wave.  See you all there!

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Chris Aldiss (No 1), Mark Jerman (No 2), Charles Carter (TLs), Simon Adlard (winch), Liz Adlard (LD)
Sunday:  William Brewis (No 1), Mark Jerman (No 2), Charles Carter (TLs), Simon Adlard (winch)

Winter Lecture Series Saturday 18th January 2020
The next lecture is on Saturday 18th January by Afandi Darlington.  Afandi is a senior inspector at the AAIB.  He holds a PPL(A) and is a keen and experienced glider pilot.  He holds a first class degree in Aeronautical Engineering and will be covering why the AAIB investigate accidents and serious incidents, the legal framework they operate within and some examples from GA and the commercial world.  As Neal pointed out over Christmas Afandi designed the first winglets for the LS4 which were fitted as a prototype to a glider in which I had a part share.  They worked very well.  We are immensely privileged in having such a distinguished speaker and I urge you to come along, support your club, learn more about aviation and have a flight and meal as well.  The talk will start at 1800 and there will be the usual request for contributions.

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman
MGC

 

Dec 132019
 

Hello
Just a quick blog this week because I’ve been busy all day and most of the evening with club business so I need to get to bed soon.  Main thing to say is that there was some doubt about the weather for Saturday and forecasts of heavy snow on the Welsh hills made us think that we may need to postpone the Christmas Dinner.  However, this afternoon the forecast had changed significantly this afternoon suggesting that if there is any snow it will be patchy, won’t last long and will be quickly followed by heavy rain that will wash it away.  So the decision is that David Crowson will have another look at the predictions first thing in the morning and blog again to confirm that we plan to proceed.  Watch this space.
Assuming we go ahead, which is highly likely, please take note of the following.  When you arrive and pay the balance owed to the kitchen you will be given a coloured ticket – red for beef, yellow for turkey and green for vegetarian, according to what you ordered.  When you find a place to sit please place the ticket on the table in front of you so that the servers can identify who has ordered what.  This will speed up the service and make sure everyone gets a hot meal.  Have a great time.

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday:  Denise Hughes (TLs), Guy Hartland (winch), Dave Cole (LD)
Sunday:  Nigel LAssetter (No 1),  Guy Hartland (winch), Laurent Couval (LD)

This will be the last blog from me before the new year.  I’m travelling to Ireland next Thursday, then its Christmas closely followed by New Year and frankly I’m looking forward to having a few weeks off.
Have a great Christmas
Jon Hall
Chairman

 

Dec 062019
 

Hi everyone
Last weekend we had a members forum at the club on Saturday evening with more than 40 people attending, where the officers presented a review of the state of the club, its finances, membership and operations status.  The forum finished with a question and answer session where members had the opportunity to question the committee about things that have happened, are happening and might happen in the near future.  John O’Reilly supported both the Treasurer and the CFI with an analysis of membership and flying activity which makes interesting reading.  For those who were unable to attend the main points were;

  • Total number of launches were down (- 7.5%) in 2018-19, mainly due to the poor weather in April, June and September
  • However the total number of club fleet glider launches was near enough where it has been for the past 4 years.
  • So the total number of launches is down, BECAUSE there were fewer members’ private glider and visitor glider launches
  • Despite the loss of the Twin Astir (end March 2019), the number of club 2-seater launches shows essentially no change, despite the weather (probably due to the increased number of courses)
  • The K13s and the K21 have taken up the slack. Over the past 7 years, the number of launches that the Twin Astir has taken had reduced from 800+ to 300’ish.
  • The club single seater launches were a bit down (@810). The Junior had 155 launches. The K23 remains the most popular single seater.
  • In particular, the K8 took only 90 launches this year.
  • Over the past 7 years, the number of club single seater launches have reduced from 1,250’ish down to somewhere around 800

The committee is working hard as always to increase membership numbers and get the fleet and launch system reliable and efficient.  There is much activity around the winches and airfield vehicles with the intention that by the beginning of the soaring season next year, before our big events of the VGC National Rally and the Olympian, all our kit will be fully serviced and fully functional.  Many thanks are due to Andy Holmes and Julian Fack for driving this.  The CFI is clear that the fleet is currently adequate for our needs but we are aware that the K21 may reach the end of its life in 5 or so years and are actively exploring ways of replacing it if it doesn’t get re-lifed.  We are preparing a strategic plan for the next five years that will address the many challenges that this club will face as buildings get older, the road continues to wear and the infrastructure needs maintenance.  It will be completed in time for the next AGM.  Membership, in common with most other gliding clubs in the UK, remains a constant challenge and the committee is reviewing the membership packages on offer to effect an improvement.  Trial lesson sales and courses remain a vital part of our revenue stream and much effort is going into improving sales of both.  With that in mind we are taking a stand at the Wenlock Fayre on Saturday, after the sales it generated last year and are taking a glider to display.  We desperately need help from people willing to give a few hours to talk to people. Please come along if you can.

Christmas Dinner
Don’t forget the Club Christmas Dinner and Awards Ceremony takes place on December 14th.  Let Helen know if you plan to attend and order and pay for your dinner ticket

Your duty teams this weekend are:
Saturday: Neal Clements (No 1), Mark Jerman (TLs), Simon Adlard (winch), Laurent Couval (LD)
Sunday:  Matthew Cook (No 2, ark Wakem (TLs), Simon Adlard (winch), Jon Hall (LD)

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman

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
Chairman

 

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 advance.room

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
Chairman
MGC

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 treasurer@midlandgliding.club.  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!

ONLINECONTEST.ORG

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

Happy landings
Jon Hall

Chairman
MGC


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: www.wonderful.org/charity/launchpoint

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 www.caa.co.uk/Consumers/Unmanned-aircraft/Our-role/Drone-and-model-aircraft-registration/.

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 register-drones.caa.co.uk/drone-code 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 chairman@midlandgliding.club 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 members.gliding.co.uk/bga-safety-management/safe-aerotowing
Thanks for reading this important safety message.

The BGA Safety Team

Happy landings
Jon Hall
Chairman
MGC
Oct 312019
 

Hi everyone

Not an especially nice day for the ghosts and ghoulies to be floating around the Mynd and the weekend looks like bringing some strong winds from the south west that may blow them away but it will be worth coming up to the club for dinner Saturday night.  See below, repeated from an email sent out today from the office ….
Halloween is upon us.
Ghoulish things are afoot at the Mynd!
Denise, together with help from the juniors, has decorated the clubhouse and ghoulies and ghosties have moved in.
Helen and Dave have prepared a meal direct from the Devil’s kitchen.
Those of you with a stomach for the above may like to see the menu for Saturday nights meal.

Scary Stuff Dinner Menu Saturday 2nd November
Starters
Eyeball Mayonaise £3.00
Bread Fingers with Sweet Chilli Sauce £3.00
The Devil’s Melon £3.00
Main Course
Ghoulish Lash Up £8.50
R.I.P. Cod £8.50
Rattling Lamb’s Ribs £8.50
Dead Chicken with Wine £8.50
Desert
Blood Red Crumble £3.00
Scary Spider Bonoffie Pie £3.00
Please give Helen or Dave a ring to book your meal.
It has become apparent this week that Ghoulies and Ghosties are all but indistinguishable from club members. Members will, of course, be wearing their membership badges but suggestions for any other techniques we could try to differentiate between the two would be appreciated.

Destination: Halloween at Value Village (CNW Group/Value Village)

Please note that on Sunday there will be no catering after 16.00

Correction
Last week I had a bit of finger trouble and innacurately reported the date of the Christmas Dinner.  It is in fact taking place on the 14th December.  Put it in your diary, or amend if you have already.

Wenlock Olympian Games Gliding
I’m happy to report that in the two weeks since we opened the entry list for the Olympian Competition we already have four registered entries and three of those are from overseas.  The competition is taking place 13th to 17th July 2020 and as the entry list is limited to 40 gliders it may be worth you putting in an early entry to make sure you get a place.  Open to any wooden or fabric covered glider, and I know we have a few of those.  Details can be seen on the competition website at olympiangliding.com.  I shall be directing the comp but will need lots of help so if you can spare a day of five get in touch.

Still waiting
for contributions for the next newsletter

Have a great weekend
Happy landings
Jon Hall
CHairman