Chair’s Thursday Blog

30 Jun 2016

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Hi everyone,  this is the regular Thursday posting to let you know what is coming up in the near future and give you highlights of the last week.

Last week:

A bit of a washout, “flaming June!”.   Still we managed to fly between the showers.

Weekend outlook:

The weekend looks quite flyable with the showers looking as if they will be to the North of us.

Saturday Mike Greenwood and Guy Hartland are on duty,  on Sunday it is  Simon Adlard and Matthew Cook.  If you need checks or want to develop your flying then these teams are ideal.  I suggest you phone the office and book.

Forthcoming events:

Shrewsbury school camp

Next week Paul Fowler is hosting the school camp with between 8 and 10 students.  Unfortunately one of the instructors has had to withdraw and if any instructor can help Paul even for half a day we would be enormously grateful.  The effort Paul puts into the schools is immense and he is creating an investment in the future of gliding.  Please help if you can.

Wenlock Olympian Games Gliding

This is getting close now,  9th of July so please make a note in your diary to come along,  enjoy some time  with some fabulous gliders and fly as well.



Building and caravan park

We are getting ready to do the fitting out of the shed now,  Roger’s roller door is to be fitted then the electrics can be started.

Web site and video

Rob and Jean Shepherd are helping with the communciations strategy and our marketing to potential members.  To this end they are appealing for any video footage you may have. We are going to create a Google Channel and steer people to this for our video material.  If you have any footage please email the office and we will be in touch.



I make no apologies for reproducing below the latest message from the BGA regarding airspace,  this is vital to our sport and therefore our club.  Please take a moment to read it.

EU – The medium to long term impact on gliding of a decision to leave the EU is anyone’s guess.
Aviation in a number of non-EU European countries is regulated by EASA, eg Norway and
Switzerland. Some months ago, the DfT advised that if the UK leaves the EU, it will continue to be a
part of the Single European Sky and subject to European aviation regulation under EASA. The BGA
will of course engage with CAA and DfT to explore any opportunities. Meanwhile, our work in Europe
continues with the overall aim of minimising the impact of EASA regulations. The loss of UK political
and government support in Europe will naturally present a new and significant challenge.
**AIRSPACE SAFETY AND PILOT RESPONSIBILITY** Airspace, like membership and airfields, is a
strategic priority for gliding. John Williams leads a small team who work tirelessly on the detail and
with others in air sport to make sure we retain our freedom to operate without controlled airspace
and other restrictions.

There are powerful forces out there looking for any justification to establish a permanent ‘known’
airspace environment, ie one involving ATC contact and transponders. Each year there are more
than 1000 claimed infringements of controlled or restricted airspace. Over 99% involve powered
aircraft. But we absolutely cannot be complacent. The CAA is focussed on the airspace infringement
problem. It is a hot topic. There is a real risk of a heavy handed response by the CAA as it attempts to
treat the symptoms but not the causes (we’ve regularly offered to help CAA to address the causes).
We have a reasonably good name as responsible airspace stakeholders. That’s in part due to
education and awareness at clubs, widespread use of moving maps, helpful airspace files, and
ongoing monitoring of activity. However, it only takes one pilot to get it wrong to destroy years of
good work by many.
One screw up, no matter how innocent, can easily destroy our freedom to fly. It’s vitally important
that all our pilots are trained properly, that everyone plans before flying, that we use GPS moving
maps with up to date navigation software, that we check and understand NOTAMs, and essentially
do all that is reasonable to avoid infringements and other airspace safety hazards. Please link to our
airspace pages from your club website and please direct
your club pilots to the information.



Neal Clements