British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

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eg. enter CF44 if your post code is CF44 1BS

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

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

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Flight theory, meteorology, basic and advanced flying skills and more. Invaluable for post-CP pilots

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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 Mike Scholes)

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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BHPA AGM & Proxy Voting

The 2016 BHPA AGM will take place at the Belfry Hotel, Nottingham NG8 6PY (adjacent to Junction 26 of the M1) on Saturday February 27th 2016 in tandem with the BGA's AGM and trade exhibition.

The AGM will start at 11am and will include the presentation of BHPA awards and trophies, the Election of Officers and Officers' reports to the membership. It is hoped that members with an interest in the running of the BHPA will attend the meeting and bring any ideas for the future or present that they may have...

Pierre Bouilloux

Our world is the poorer for the passing of pioneer pilot, instructor, manufacturer and vol-biv exponent Pierre Bouilloux on December 22nd. Originally a great climber who would go on to put up some great routes in the western Alps, in 1979 Pierre started a hang gliding school at Annecy.

In 1985 he took up paragliding and rapidly became one of the sport's early pioneers. He was one of the first pilots to start breaking records and went on to set many world triangle and out-and-return records; his 237.1km triangle around the Tête du Parmelan remains unbeaten after 12 years...

Old hang gliding film

Francis Freedland's 1978 film Pico Peak International Hang Gliding Meet documents one of the earliest hang gliding competitions, held in Vermont, USA with a remarkable $10,000 purse.

Notable appearances include Jean-Michel Bernasconi, (went on to found Pacific Windcraft) and Dennis Pagen (soon-to-be-prolific author) among many others...

Record conditions in NSW

At a French record camp at Deniliquin Seiko Fukuoka Naville reset the female free distance (using up to three turnpoints) to 378km aboard an Enzo 2 on December 14th, handsomely exceeding Nicole Fedele's 2010 record of 255.7km.

Early in January we heard that Japan's Yoko Isomoto had broken Kari Castle's longstanding 353.4km ladies straight-distance-to-goal record...

Skywings online!

The launch of January's online version of Skywings magazine appears to have gone well. We've received a number of likes on Facebook and, once issues with members using older unsupported software were ironed out, no negative feedback. If the online version proves to be a popular option it will eventually reflect the online media world in appearance and functionality. But that's a long-term goal; for the present we are simply providing an online version of the printed magazine.

The February 2016 issue of Skywings is available to view online or download on the Skywings Magazine page of this website. Please enter the username and password published in the printed version of the February issue when requested. After six months this issue will be freely available with no password required...

last updated: 02 February 2016

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