Pembrey

Today’s flight was opportunistic. The TB20 had been booked by my co-owners who aren’t IMC rated and who didn’t want to fly in today’s weather (cloudbase 4000 feet at Gloucester but elsewhere around 2000 feet). Although cold (hence a low freezing level), the cloud layer was thin and I thought quite feasible to fly above it otherwise remain close to base. This was confirmed by pilots at the club who

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End of Year Review 2018

This year was definitely focussed on gaining my instructor qualifications, but other highlights included a club tour to Sweden and a long weekend to Scotland in CORB. I’m beginning to understand why so many instructors rarely fly more than 25 miles from base, and have resolved not to let that happen. My training route towards instructing for the Instrument Rating required several steps: Passing 11 CPL Theory exams (I was

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Daytrip to Antwerp

Deciding on a Daytrip With so much of my flying time now spent instructing, I was still keen to fly my group share TB20 G-CORB somewhere. The flight profile of an instructor can often be limited to 25 miles from base, although I have managed a couple of cross-channel day trips with PPL pilots. Some of those taking my formal cross-channel groundschool later ask me to join them on their

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My first CB-IR Student

Having taught quite a few hours of PPL instruction, it was quite a contrast to be able to instruct for the CB-IR (Competency Based Instrument Rating). I’d known my first student for some time, having given him an RNAV/G1000 training session in the Redbird simulator and later mentored him on his first cross channel flight. Andrew has a share in a Turbo Arrow based at Bournemouth, so would need to

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Instrument Rating Instructor Course

This week saw the final step in my journey to become a qualified EASA IRI (Instrument Rating Instructor) – similar to an FAA CFII – which allows me to instruct pilots towards a full Instrument Rating as well as the UK IR(R). Over the past 18 months, I’ve passed 11 CPL Theory exams, undergone a six week practical training course and Assessment of Competence to become an EASA Flight Instructor,

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Hawarden and the Beluga

A second daytrip on the same weekend in my shared TB20, G-CORB from Gloucester, this time to Hawarden and back, with Russ, another Bristol Aero Club member. It may be some time before I can fly her again due to other commitments, so I wanted to make the most of the time available. Hawarden isn’t too far away (about 100 miles) and offers a free instrument approach when landing. The

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Leeds Bradford

Our shared TB20 is back at Gloucester after some months of downtime with technical issues. I was keen to get back in the saddle, not having flown much IFR at all through the summer. I’d promised a flight in it to Mark, one of the Bristol Aero Club pilots, who had qualified to IR(R) last year. He’s a wheelchair user, so that was quite unusual from a logistics viewpoint. On

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Flight Instructor Removal of Supervisory Restriction

Probation In Europe under EASA, newly qualified flight instructors must first operate under the supervision of more experienced instructors until they have instructed for 100 hours and signed off 25 solo flights. During this time, they can’t sign off a first solo or a first solo nav away from the circuit. Typically the supervising instructor is the Chief Flying Instructor at a flying school, but it can be any unrestricted

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Visit to Distress and Diversion at NATS Swanwick

John, one of the more proactive members of Bristol Aero Club, organised a visit to D&D (Distress and Diversion not dungeons and dragons) at NATS (National Air Traffic Services) in their Swanwick centre near Southampton. These are the controllers who answer the distress frequency 121.5 which is available to all aircraft throughout the UK airspace 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The centre also handles all commercial traffic in

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Club flyout to Mona, Anglesey

Gloucester – Sleap – Mona – Welshpool – Gloucester The Bristol Aero Club monthly flyout in June flew to Mona (EGOQ) in Anglesey, North Wales. I had advertised my availability to come along in my role as instructor and two students were quite keen to fly a leg each. We made clear it wouldn’t count as part of their formal syllabus, but the hours did count towards the 45 minimum

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