Jun 092020
Launch Queue

Launch Queue

A decent and well-supported day, with 12 pilots taking a total of 27 launches. 5500 cloud-base, and strong thermals that still kept bubbling even when the top cover came over later in the day.

A return to currency for Charles P, Dave W and Guy, and a possibly very close to Silver Height for Holly.

Responsible Social Distancing

Responsible Social Distancing

291 and KA both put in some XC kms – hopefully traces will appear on the ladder. New member Stavros turned up just to help out; he proved a quick learner on the ground, and in the (virtual) air too, courtesy of a lesson in the simulator with Dave.

Thanks to Steve A for providing the launches, and to everyone who attended and made it such an enjoyable day.

Mark S

 Posted by at 8:32 pm
Jun 082020

Seems as though they had a decent day today at the Mynd and the weather looks set fair enough for a repeat tomorrow

I’m running the field, Steve Alexander is winching. These details are now back up again at the regular location


We’ll open the hangar doors at 9.00, have a briefing at 10.00 and aim for a first launch at 10.30

COVID-19 has not gone away, so please read and familiarise yourself with these documents tonight, so you’re on the ball with it for tomorrow …

Temporary Operating Rules

Sanitisation Rules

Thanks very much. Look forward to seeing you all tomorrow.



 Posted by at 7:59 pm
Jun 072020

Hi All.

Well Andy Holmes, Mark Sanders & Dave “Dangerous with a tephigram” Crowson have got our heads together and we reckon the best chance for flying this coming week will be Monday & Tuesday. Dave C will supervise Monday and Mark S will supervise Tuesday. Winch drivers currently under negotiation Monday, but we’ll have cover! Steve Alexander is driving Tuesday. Thanks to all.

It doesn’t look like a spectacular week, but both days should produce flyable windows and are the best opportunities we seem to have this week. Tuesday might currently look like the best bet, but the weather situation is very variable. One of us will update again later. Don’t worry if you see a wet start forecast, as we will fly even if it’s just for the afternoon and will fly until late if needed after a late start. Don’t forget the Mynd can often produce good flying windows, even when the forecast looks poor, due to the local topography. If there’s a rain shower at any stage, we can shelter in cars or in a socially distanced manner in the hangar mouth.

Please support us and use this opportunity to visit the club and get flying if you meet the current flying requirements. It doesn’t need to be a 500 day to get current again. It is worthwhile to come and fly a club glider or your own glider and just do a few circuits or local soaring to get back up to speed. The more flying we do, the sooner the weather limitations can be revised again & the more ready we can be for the next big day.

If you don’t meet the current flying requirements, or feel uncomfortable flying after such a long lay off, please still come and help, chat to the supervising instructor, tinker with your glider, whatever. It would be great to see you.

Please let us know on here if you plan to attend, so we can gauge demand/enthusiasm for these sessions.

Thanks 👍

Andy, Dave & Mark

 Posted by at 10:20 am
Jun 022020

For anyone travelling from Norbury direction to Ratchup (Ratlinghope) with a trailer – DON’T, as the road is shut for three weeks at the narrow bridge below Wentnor, south of The Inn on the Green. (slightly clearer now) Cars shouldn’t have a problem making the detour, an 18ft trailer would be trickier. Suggest if approaching Ratlinghope from the south with a glider trailer in tow, using Wentnor as the go round.


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
Midland Gliding Club


Mar 152020

Patience was required after a wet start but once that was through soaring was available till late late afternoon when squall of showers saw us finish for the day. Initially steady ridge lift that softened, and then went thermic to about 3K5 QNH, although i wouldn’t know because i had no beep beep beeps in the cockpit, and therefore couldn’t soar! Good to finally get some proper thermals in plus soaring. Thanks to the duty team for making it happen.


Mar 152020

Very difficult to forecast after Monday due to a frontal system trailing across the UK sliding lengthwise . The exact position, whether it is slightly North or South of the predicted track giving a very different outcome.

Looking on the bright side go with RASP

Monday.   10/15 knt WSW A good day, probably the best of the week.

Tuesday   20 knt SW OK-ish

Wednesday   Poor.

Thursday  15 knt N. OK

Friday  20 knt NNE  OK-ish

If you trust the BBC then everything after Monday is rubbish

Mar 132020

Hi all,

With the VGC Rally and Wenlock gliding events being hosted by the club this year, changes to the briefing room were required to provide a more versatile environment encompassing new IT infrastructure and the ability to brief to a greater number of pilots with the existing  floor space.

A 75″ TV with audio and a sliding whiteboard have been mounted on the West facing wall, the room has been uplifted with a lick of fresh paint and a new, smaller PC installed. The old chairs have been upholstered and new curtains are in the pipeline as well as energy saving LED down lighters which have already been installed in the ceiling.

The safety video for our Air Experience customers and clubs promotional video are already loaded onto the PC and we will soon have the various field layouts, launch failure options, ridge running and other customised PowerPoint presentations for our members, visitors and course members installed

The project is not yet finished so the room looks quite sparse at the moment but a few important photographs and prints relating to the clubs history are to be re-framed and mounted, some painting needs to be completed, new cabinetry for the PC and the 500k and club Chairmans boards are to be updated.

Lots of people have given up their time to get involved in this project including in no particular order, Steve Rudge, Rob Hanks, Gill and Nick LeGras, Denise Hughes, James Moore and apologies to anyone we have left out.




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

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

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.

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.

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

Mar 042020

Dates and venues for the 2020 series are now available here on the club website …

Inter Club League (Rockpolishers)

Intermediates and Pundits, please let me know which of the dates you are available for, so I can start compiling the teams.

Novices, in my capacity as MGC Rockpolishers Captain, I will be stalking you individually!!

Mark S

 Posted by at 8:40 pm
Mar 012020

Where were you today? a lovely ridge day. A bit showery in the morning then a beautiful afternoon.

Tuesday is looking tasty 15/20knt westerly, cloudbase 4200, with a 4.5 star rating whats not to like.

So we are open Tuesday, thanks to Pete who has offered to winch and I can run the field

Thursday.   10knt NW backing SW possible low cloud

Friday.   15/20 WNW possible low cloud but less  likely than yesterday

Saturday. A long way away but looks like 10/15 W backing S, deteriorating later in the afternoon

Feb 292020

It is looking ok Sunday 25knt WSW and a star rating of 1, don’t knock it 1 is not to be sneezed at (if you have a dry cough, a temperature and a sneeze stay away).

Next week Tuesday is looking good, I will look at it Sunday evening and blog.

Thursday and Friday both look flyable at the moment, 15KNT Northerly with a star rating of 3!! on Thursday.

Friday there should be 15knt WSW veering Westerly.

A lot can change in a week so I will post an update.


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!

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

Feb 262020

Well, the best is Thursday, so lets hope that the snow overnight doesn’t make access difficult.

The forecast is for a 25knt NW which may be challenging! as for the rest:

Friday.   Grim

Saturday.  25knt SW, or 20knt SE backing Southerly and grim. Rasp says it will be SW all day with the wind off the clock

Sunday.  Rasp quite likes Sunday, challenging 25+knt WSW. some say less wind, some say westerly, some all say showery possibly wintery.

Thursday late morning onwards seems the best (not much competition though)

Feb 242020

The weather models are all liking Wednesday (26 Feb). Once again it’s 20-25 kt on the ridge and with thermal predicted to 4000 ASL, RASP is currently giving it a heady three and a half stars, which might even tempt some private owners to rig – mine’s still on ground risk until Sunday, unfortunately! There is hope for some of the days following, but absolutely no agreement between the models as to which those days might be, so I’m saying nothing, because there’s currently nothing to say.

Anyway, back to Wednesday …

 Can we tempt enough of you to  make a day of it?

I can run the field and instruct; Orch has once again very kindly offered to launch us.

If you are up for it, please make yourself known by teatime tomorrow and we’ll firm up on a plan.

Cheers, Mark S

 Posted by at 8:44 pm
Feb 232020

Arrived at the club in the rain at 11:00, but it had cleared by 11:45 (phew!) and we took our first launch at around 12:30. A very pleasant afternoon after that with a strong ridge in 20-25W and some decent thermal action. With three instructors on the field, we could have handled quite a bit more business, but Andrew, Matt, Nigel, Clive, Dave W, Tim (from Sackville), Mark and Riccardo(!!) all had fun in the K21 and K23; and Orch launched us with his usual aplomb.

Where were you ...

View from the launch point … …

Keeping an eye on this coming Tuesday and Wednesday – fear not, if they look viable, you’ll be the first to know!

Mark S

 Posted by at 8:41 pm
Feb 222020

Sunday now looking much better than previously forecast. After early low cloud and light rain clears, that pesky strong wind abates and we see a predicted and pleasant 15-20kt on the ridge and enough headroom to be able to use it.

So, on that basis, we’ll give you a nice lie in, convene at 11:00, and get cracking as soon as we can after that.

See you there tomorrow!

Mark S

 Posted by at 8:34 am
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?



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