Hang Glider

British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

Enter the first part of your postcode to find your nearest BHPA registered school
eg. enter CF44 if your post code is CF44 1BS

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Or view
schools location map

Download the BHPA Elementary Pilot Training Guide - 2.88mb
Download the BHPA Elementary Pilot Training Guide (8.11mb)

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Subscribe to Skywings magazine
Subscribe to Skywings the official magazine of the BHPA, or buy back issues

Visiting Overseas Hang Gliding & Paragliding Pilots please read this.....

Purchase the Pilot Handbook
Buy the BHPA Pilot Handbook
Flight theory, meteorology, basic and advanced flying skills and more. Invaluable for post-CP pilots

Events & Competitions Calendar
Events & Competitions

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Submit and incident report to the BHPA
Submit Incident Report

The BHPA is a member of the The Royal Aero Club of the United Kingdom
The BHPA is a member of The The Royal Aero Club of the United Kingdom

The BHPA is a member of the European Hang Gliding & Paragliding Union
The BHPA is a member of The European Hang Gliding & Paragliding Union

Welcome to the British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association (BHPA) website.

From its head office in Leicester the BHPA supports a country-wide network of recreational clubs and registered schools, and provides the infrastructure within which hang gliding and paragliding in the United Kingdom (UK) thrive.

Hang Glider (Courtesy Darren Blackman)

The BHPA oversees pilot and instructor training standards, and provides technical support such as airworthiness standards, and coaching courses for qualified hang gliding and paragliding pilots.

Initial hang gliding or paragliding training must be undertaken at a BHPA registered school.

Most schools offer training in a wide range of flying disciplines, so it's important to understand the differences between the disciplines before choosing a school.

The Learn to Fly section of this web site explains the relative merits of each discipline, the types of flying involved, and provides an insight into the training methods used.

As you near the end of your initial training with one of our registered schools, it's important to start looking for suitable recreational club to join.

The BHPA supports a network of UK hang gliding and paragliding recreational clubs who are able to offer the supportive flying and social environment vital to the safe development of your flying skills as you leave the school enviroment to join other recreational flyers on the hill.

Paraglider (Courtesy Jerome Maupoint)

The BHPA has a disability initiative called Flyability. This reports directly to the BHPA's Executive Council on disability related matters within the sport.

Flyability doesn't simply take people with disabilities flying, it strives to motivate people with disabilities to become involved in the sport of hang gliding and paragliding and to train as pilots.

Much of Flyability's work in the sport, focuses around changing peoples perception of disability and their attitudes toward people with disabilities. Disability awareness, education and advice play key roles in Flyability's aims and objectives, as does the development of specialist equipment, training and flying techniques.

The BHPA also publishes Skywings, a glossy full colour monthly magazine. To wet your appetite, a small selection of past issues is available for download on our Skywings page.

Skywings is the only magazine dedicated to free flying in the United Kingdom, and is distributed by mail to around 6,500 BHPA members as part of their membership package.

Skywings magazine is also read by countless more hang gliding and paragliding pilots and organisations around the world who have purchased an International Skywings magazine subscription from our on-line shop.

Back issues of Skywings magazine can also be purchased from our on-line shop.

Paramotor (Courtesy Paul Bailey)

The BHPA provides automatic £5 million 3rd-party insurance for its members. But if you require personal or travel insurance, this should be obtained from an independent insurance broker.

We hope that when you've found a school appropriate to your needs, made contact and begun training, you'll discover for yourself the excitement and challenge that makes free flying such a great pastime.

If you do, you‘ll also find that the level of support and camaraderie amongst pilots is one of the many great strengths of the sport.

You'll make friends, go places and achieve things that you may have only dreamed about in the past.

It's a fantastic sport...

So why don't you join us, and never look back.

Whilst Skywings magazine frequently includes lively and thought provoking articles and letters about our sport, there are numerous alternative sources of lively debate on the internet. The following is only a small selection of those available:

The websites and Facebook pages listed above are independent and not affiliated in any way to the British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association. The views expressed in them are therefore not necessarily those of the British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association.


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Tony Hughes is Worthing International Birdman!

Former European hang gliding champion Tony Hughes took the top prize at this year's Worthing Birdman competition in August. Difficult conditions on the second day meant that no-one could improve on Tony's 106.5m flight on his Scandal XK on the Saturday.

"106m proves that an old has-been can still glide when there's £10k up for grabs!", he reported afterwards. "I hope it will inspire a few more youngsters to take up hang gliding which has always been my true love!" Tony received a cheque for over £12,000 which will benefit the Wiltshire Air Ambulance...

Parafest success

The Parafest three-day free-flying event at Llangollen on June 12th - 14th was reckoned to be a huge success. Tickets had sold out to capacity a month before the event, but quite a few chose to stay at home rather than face the expected mudbath of Glastonbury proportions.

In fact the forecast torrential rain never appeared and Parafest enjoyed dry fields, sunshine and low winds. Those who committed to having a good time regardless of the weather were rewarded with three flyable days!

Parafest welcomed over 500 attendees, mainly pilots, wannabee pilots and their families, to the bottom landing fields at the popular North Wales site. Nearly 150 paramotor pilots had registered to fly; many more didn't bother to bring their kit but came just for the social and to party. Paraglider pilots had a short drive to a coastal soaring site as the wind was not on the hill for the Friday and Saturday, but everyone had good airtime on both days, enjoying the fantastic views...

Telford show

FLYER Live! (incorporating the Flying Show) runs on November 28th - 29th at Telford International Centre.

A worthy successor to the BHPA/BMAA show that used to run at Telford and then moved to the NEC, the show returned to its roots last year with a new organiser, the publishers of Flyer magazine, and was reported to have been a great success. 50+ stands will cover a wide range of recreational aviation activites; exhibitors include Flylight, a number of instrument and radio sources, several insurance specialists, aviation software developers and publishers...

last updated: 05 October 2015