Chair’s Thursday Blog

25 May 2017

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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 a few highlights from the last committee meeting.

Trip to Jaca

I thought I would describe the benefits of the expedition. We had four Mynd gliders there – three Duos FZ, JF and KA and Clive’s JS1.  The gliders have been averaging 15 to 20 hours a week with a mixture of tasks between 100 and 300k per day. One day we flew the length of the Pyrenees and back which is about 460k. Pilots who have been sharing have been getting about 10 hours a week whilst those not sharing have been getting twice that. The conditions have been such that relatively simple, high tasks can be achieved or, for the more adventurous and knowledgeable, the high mountains have been available most days offering stunning mountain flying. The big advantage to this expedition is having the opportunity to dramatically increase your hours, fly in stunning conditions and learning new skills if you wish.   We plan to do a winter evening on the club expeditions (Millfield, Llanbedr, Jaca, competitions) so members can understand the benefits, costs etc.

Club house garden furniture

Dave d’Arcy and volunteers have started renovating the “patio furniture”.  We owe a great thank you to Dave and his team for doing this.  Watching the Mynd sunset from outdoors on the patio is absolutely stunning.

Access road

Howard, Charles and Tim are beavering away on the reconstruction.  You will be seeing material delivered ready for the next phase.

K23 trailer

Rob Hanks has done a fantastic job with volunteers including Marc Williams, see photo.  It is almost ready to go, one last effort is all that is required.  Please call the office or the club if you could spare an hour to help.  If you are an aspiring cross country pilot or want your silver distance then you will need a good K23 trailer!

Going Cross-country?
Land-out packs are now available in the office. Please pick one up before you head off. If you are lucky enough to land in a field however far away, we encourage you to give the pack to your friendly farmer. It contains an invitation card they can send us, so that we can invite them to the Farmers’ Thank You supper, which will be held on 23rd Sept
(No need to buy a pack when you get it from the office – you only pay for their meal if they turn up to the supper!)

Your team this weekend is: Mike Witton, Alasdair Lewis, Stephen Alexander.  Bring your shorts and T shirts and sun cream.

Forthcoming events:
3rd – 5th June – Aim Higher practical course
If you haven’t booked on this yet then please contact the office.  Its pretty full but if you want to use your own aircraft then there should be space.  Also Mark has arranged for some Duo s to be available so there will be seats in those.

3rd – 9th June – Aerobatic Intro Week
Steve Male is running this popular week and if you’ve not already booked on for one or more days, and would like to take part to learn some aerobatic skills and move towards an aerobatic qualification, please do email the office without delay & we will make sure the message is passed on to Steve.

Sat 24th June – Recruitment drive

We must get new members for the club to thrive and this day is a vital part of that strategy.  Neal Clements will be number 1 for the day, we will have a briefing the night before if you are around and at 08:30 in the morning.  Please can I ask you to volunteer,  Mac has done a fabulous job in getting volunteers but we need more, especially at the welcome point.  You only have to do an hour, no more,  please email the office and we will add you to the rota.

Mac is organising this “longest day, open day” recruitment drive on the 24th of June. The promotion for this is well under way now. If you can help by putting a poster(s) up in your locality, please grab one from Martin. We emailed it out as a pdf to all members recently & would be grateful if you could circulate it to your friends who may be interested in booking a flight slot (for just £25). There will be tours, talks, catering, video displays, so it should give people a really good ‘Taster’ to see if membership could be for them. You can also encourage them to find out more details on our facebook page here.
Here’s how we’re approaching it: “If you’ve always wanted to learn to fly, please join us for a Gliding Taster Day on the Longest Day of the Year. We will be flying from 5am until sunset around 10pm! Bookable flight slots £25 Experience flying over beautiful Shropshire & Wales at dawn or dusk. Discover what gliding is all about:-
Gliding talks & presentations
Guided tours of the airfield, clubhouse and facilities
Meet all the members, staff & volunteers (we’re very friendly & don’t bite!)
Find out if gliding is for you
Special deals & offers available on the day for those wishing to become members
REGISTRATION & PRE-BOOKING ADVISABLE, although you can also turn up on the day & we will aim to fly everyone!
To book a flight slot for you and your family or friends, please contact Martin on 01588650206 or
In addition we want to increase the activity and the interest for members. Years ago we used to run a “dawn to dusk” day and we are going to combine the two. It is fantastic fun, we run in shifts and do “shedloads” of launches (or words to that effect). Flying starts at 5am and continues until 10pm. Please drop Neal an email at if you would like to help out for a shift, everyone is welcome and I guarantee you will have a great day.
8th – 15th July – MGC Wood Week
Roger is leading this year’s Wood Week, which is an opportunity for all gliders particularly those of the wooden variety to get together, admire their beautiful aircraft, and to take part in various “Enterprise” type tasks, either cross-country, height gain, or other fun things like spot landing competitions. It’s always a colourful event, so would encourage you to come along. Equally, if you know of anyone from other clubs who may like to join us, then please let me know & I can email you the poster or further details which you can pass on

21st July – Glide Britain
There is a possibility that we may host filming team for Glide Britain, who are creating a suite of UK-wide marketing materials & resources, which we hope to tap into to broaden our scope & reach for marketing & promotion. A small part of this includes creation of a short film showcasing different elements of gliding found at various clubs throughout the UK. Please do say hi & make them feel welcome. We may also need a couple of volunteers / characters(!) to speak with them on the day – more details to follow.

5th-13th August – Simon’s Cross-Country Week
Unfortunately we have had to cancel the above.

19th-27th August – MGC Task Week (party on 27th)

If you’re planning on coming, please book in so that we can start to know numbers. And if you know of people who may wish to join us, please do ask for the info/links (being set up at the moment) so that you can share it with them.   This year we are going for a different format with tasks being set inside themselves (wait for it).  For example a 200 k task may contain a 150 , a 100 and a 50k task.  This way any aspiring badges eg Silver can be accommodated in the same conditions as the bigger tasks.  More details to follow but book the week now, the fields are terrific, the organisation is even better and you will make significant progress with guaranteed retrieves and a lot of fun.

23rd Sept – Farmers’ Thank You Supper
See above for info. A great opportunity to thank your farmer, showcase the club & build our reputation as generally
friendly folk, all at the same time!

Junior Nationals

Junior Nationals and Two-Seater Training. Entries are now open for the 2017 Nationals and Two-Seater Training. These will be held at Nympsfield from 19-27 August. Anyone can apply as long as their 26th birthday falls after 2017. As usual, two-seater competition training will run alongside the competition. You can enter the competition even if you do not have your Silver badge yet, but you cannot be given a place until you have completed it. If you are not sure whether you will get your silver before the competition, you can apply for both the competition and the two-seater training. The two-seater training course is intended to prepare young pilots to fly a rated competition solo in a subsequent year. Places are limited. Although any worthy applicant will be considered, the majority of successful applicants have Bronze & XC Endorsement completed and some solo soaring time. Applications for both the competition and the training should be made by 22nd May at Applications from previously unsuccessful applicants are welcome. Questions about the competition and the entry process should be addressed to and two-seater training queries should be addressed to Ed Foxon ( or Andy Holmes (

Committee meeting 12 May highlights

I wasn’t present so the following are extracts from the minutes that I believe will be of interest:-

ATC.  The first trips have been very successful, thanks to Paul Fowler for this.

FLARM and radio grant.  Dave Wedlock has submitted the application

Accommodation block roof.  Work due to start (I believe this is complete now, thanks to Simon Towers for organising this).

Provisioning:  there is a problem with overbooking, CFI to address with the office.  Steve Foster has been helping re design the flying list.