I learned to fly after sitting through an engine-out in my cousin’s Blade 912; he wanted to show me why he was so passionate about little aeroplanes but didn’t expect there’d be so much water in the fuel he’d bought! I was hooked - learning in a Thruster 582, flying a Rans 503 around Europe, building an Escapade 912 and now the adventures come in a tailwheel Rans 912. I have a degree and post-grad qualifications in Business & Languages and run a company in the construction sector. After the building boom/bust in 2007 I took time out and worked in Switzerland for FAI, the International Air Sports Federation, before coming back to England in 2014 and I draw on this experience for the benefit of our sport in the UK. Through CIMA (the FAI microlight commission) I am involved in administering international competitions and have been event director for the European Microlight Championships in 2010 at Sywell and the double World Microlight and Paramotor championships 2016 at Popham - both were BMAA events, the biggest BMAA have ever organised. I’ve been on and off BMAA council since 2005 and have always taken an active role - organising the Flying Show for 5 years, getting involved in a range of different initiatives, developing a new website, writing magazine articles, attending meetings and representing microlighters in UK and international events. I’m always looking ahead to see how we can make British microlighting better so we can encourage the next generation of pilots to be equally enthusiastic about our sport.
Interests in BMAA activities range from rebuilding and flying an SSDR, to building and flying three axis planes, as well as a bit of flexwing flying. A recent LAPL adds to the mix. Airspace and conspicuity are concerns for me. Retired but still a Chartered Engineer and registered accountant.
I have had my microlight pilots licence for 20 years and have been a flying instructor for 19 years. I run my own flying school from Plaistows Farm in St. Albans. As well as teaching normal students I also teach and examine instructors. I have a real interest in competition flying and have been World Microlight Champion 5 times. I also have a Masters Degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Brunel University. I have been working on the BMAA council for 10 years and thoroughly enjoy trying to make the sport we all love safer and better.
I’ve been flying microlights since 2004, always Flexwing, and I still consider myself to be a young pilot. I like to have at least one flying adventure each year, something to plan for, look forward too and feel a sense of achievement once completed. Initially these were what I deemed significant flights cross country to then touring and camping, in 2015 myself and a good flying friend flew right round the outside of the UK mainland for charity. Sea to the Left (made navigation a lot easier) was seven flying days covering 2200 miles of coastline 35 airfields visited and £8000 donated between two cancer charities based in the Northwest. I’ve always enjoyed taking part in the BMAA Nationals as they got me up and out to different parts of the country that otherwise I probably wouldn’t have gone, It taught me a slightly different take on flying and also got me involved with the British Team where together with my trusted Sea to the Left companion Neil King we managed to get a Bronze Medal in the European Championships in Hungary.I am that person who has to tell at least one person at any given party or gathering that I’m a pilot and I fly microlights for a hobby, but why not. Its a fantastic sport, its brought me many hours of pleasure, afforded me some of the best experiences in life I could ever wish for and I think we should all be proud of that. Tell everyone I say, get them all flying and encourage those who have already endured the fight to gain their pilots licence to go out and use it, find your own adventure. Happy Flying.
After having tried parachuting, gliding, flex-wing and then fixed wing, I decided I wanted to learn to be in the pilot seat and started lessons in 2003. I fell in love with the freedom and simplicity of microlighting, and have never stopped. It’s all about the adventure for me and trying new things. Compared with others I have relatively few hours, but constantly expanding my experiences I have flown 4 types of microlights, 8 types of GA aircraft, visited 51 airfields, flown in 6 different countries, and expanded my GA licence to Night & IMC, but whilst that’s great fun, you can’t beat the simplicity of just nipping in to your local microlight field on the way home from work and zipping into the air for 30mins for the cost of a few litres of MOGAS, and I’ve introduced over 100 friends as passengers to the delights of flying whilst doing so. The photo is with my father-in-law now, 92 yrs old – Big smiles. Work-wise I am a qualified Director and Branch Chairman with the Institute of Directors, an Executive Business Coach, and Head up the Learning & Development Academy for BHSF Group in Birmingham.
I obtained my PPL in the 1980’s and flew a Cessna 172 aircraft for many years. In 2000 I was offered a flight in a flexwing microlight aircraft and it changed my life. Whilst I always had the joy of flying, that day I discovered the thrill of flying. After a course of instruction I obtained my microlight rating. Not long afterwards I obtained my instructor rating and with the encouragement of my wife and family I decided to give up my corporate career to pursue a new career in Microlight aviation.
Since then, I have managed my own successful flying school, I have been a BMAA approved check-pilot, and I also obtained an FE rating. The highlight of my Microlight flying was working for Batoka Sky in Zambia as their chief Microlight pilot conducting tourist flights over Victoria Falls, flying wildlife management patrols and performing other aerial services.
I’m passionate about microlight flying and as a council member I want to see us promote awareness for microlight aviation to a wider audience so that many others can experience that ‘thrill of flying’……a life changing experience.
I have been a student for a long time but I hope to get my GST in the near future. I have been round the block towing the simulator to various shows and events, some seem quite a long way from flying.
I own a microlight you may have seem it around, ZY is its regulation. We have got several shows to go to this year so I hope to see you there.