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British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

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Skywings News - all non archived years

Users of Airband radios

The radio airways have become very congested and additional capacity is being created by changing from 25 kHz to 8.33 kHz spacing.

What this means to you is that from 1st January 2018, if you need to communicate on an 8.33 kHz channel you will need to use an 8.33 kHz capable radio. Further ahead, from 1st January 2019, if your flight mandates carriage of a radio, then it must be 8.33 kHz capable.

Ground services will be changing over to 8.33 kHz channels during 2018 so you are advised to check regularly with any you communicate with.

The emergency frequency 121.500 will remain permanently on the 25kHz spacing. The frequency 118.675, assigned to hang gliding and paragliding, falls under a temporary exemption, valid until the end of 2018. The CAA has put some temporary exemptions in place for 2018 that relate predominately to air-to-air communication on sporting frequencies. These and other information can be found on the 8.33kHz radios page on the CAA website.

BHPA members that have a radio licence issued by the CAA may apply for some EU funding to assist in the purchase of new 8.33kHz compatible equipment. The funding covers not just communication equipment, but headsets, intercoms, mics and speakers.

Funding is available either for fixed equipment in aircraft registered on the G-Reg register of civil aircraft, or for handheld equipment for holders of a UK Aeronautical Transportable Radio Licence. Twenty percent of the cost of new equipment can be claimed by way of a refund after a purchase has been initiated. The invoice or order must show that the purchase was initiated on or before 31 December 2017, so that the funding can be deemed to have influenced the purchase. The deadline for submitting claim forms is 28 Feb 2018, but this may be change. If you are considering making a purchase and a claim, the CAA have plenty of funding available, but the clock is ticking... we suggest you check the eligibility criteria and act soon!

For more details on the funding and eligibility criteria please visit the 8.33kHz funding application page on the CAA website.

Posted: 7 December 2017
By: Paul Dancey


Charlie King flies Kilimanjaro

British pilot Charlie KingOn September 27th British pilot Charlie King flew from the summit of Africa's highest mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro (5,895m) in Tanzania, and is thought to be the first woman pilot to have achieved this feat. She flew a BGD Echo and was part of this year's Paraglide Kilimanjaro expedition.

Charlie has completed several hike-and-fly events including the Transdromoise, Airtour and Bornes to Fly, and mountain ultra-marathons like the 119km, 7200m ascent Traces des Ducs de Savoie. Charlie, who learnt to fly in a BHPA school, currently resides in southern France and works as XC magazine's news editor.

Posted: 20 November 2017
By: Paul Dancey


Has paragliding gone mainstream?

Many will have missed four-times British paragliding champion Adrian Thomas on BBC Radio 4's Life Scientific programme on October 31st, explaining his professional life of research into insect flight and building dragonfly-drones.

Non-radio listeners will also have missed the previous Sunday's 'slow radio' spot on the flagship morning news, in which we were treated to a whole minute of BHPA member Glyn Pollington's vario beeping hard as he climbed out somewhere in Bulgaria. Are we, all of a sudden, normal?

Posted: 20 November 2017
By: Paul Dancey


Suffolk Club renames itself

The Suffolk Coastal Floaters Hang Gliding Club has renamed itself Suffolk Hang Gliding. The original club was formed in 1979 and most flying was indeed done on a range of coastal sites all round the East Anglian coastline.

With the lifting of the BHGA ban on towing the club acquired runway access and storage at Mendlesham in Suffolk and commenced towing. Although club pilots still fly the Suffolk and Norfolk sea cliffs, towing has remained the club's centre of gravity; renaming the club simply acknowledges that fact. It's still probably the best and friendliest small club in the country. Contact them through the Suffolk Hang Gliding Club website.

Posted: 20 November 2017
By: Paul Dancey


January date for BFR

The Thames Valley Club's Big Fat Repack will take place earlier than usual this year, on Sunday January 14th at the Rivermead Leisure Centre in Reading.

Two custom-built zip wires (thank you Go Ape!) will be in operation for practice deployments. Air Ambulance personnel will give talks on incident management and first-aid essentials, and Bill Morris's team will demonstrate the crucial points of repacking your reserve. The event, expected to attract up to 140 pilots, is open to TVHGC members and non-members alike; registration is online on the Big Fat Repack website.

Please note: the BFR is not intended as a cheap repack service, but for pilots to learn how to repack their own parachutes, usually done in pairs, but with qualified packers immediately on hand to guide you through the process.

Posted: 20 November 2017
By: Paul Dancey


North Wales Repack

The North Wales Hang-Gliding and Paragliding Club will be running its annual parachute repack at the Airbus Social Club at Broughton, near Chester, starting at 10.00 on Saturday 20th January 2018.

Bill Morris and his team of BHPA parachute packers will provide instruction and supervision. The event is open to any BHPA member at a cost of £15; advance booking by January 15th is essential. Book online on the club website, or contact Jerry Hazzard at 01948 780378, email: chairman@nwhgpc.org.uk.

Posted: 20 November 2017
By: Paul Dancey


Ben Philpott receives Pepe Lopes Medal

Ben Philpott awarded the Pepe Lopes MedalThe start of the 111th FAI General Conference at Lausanne in October was marked by the presentation of medals and awards to outstanding pilots and air sports supporters from around the world.

Among those presented, by FAI President Frits Brink, was Ben Philpott's Pepe Lopes Medal, awarded for 'the exceptional character and sportsmanship shown by his actions in assisting a fellow pilot in critical circumstances, despite having suffered a traumatic experience'.

This was in recognition of the care and support Ben provided to the injured Rob Gregg following a mid-air collision at the British Hang Gliding Championship at Laragne in 2016.

Posted: 20 November 2017
By: Paul Dancey


Brett Janaway takes over Airtribune

xTc's Brett JanawayAirtribune, the GPS tracking and competition results service developed by Alex Belskiy, has been taken over by xTc's Brett Janaway.

Alex has developed Airtribune over the last five years with the help of a large team of professional developers, but Brett says there's still lots to do. Brett has long been known for his involvement in the tracking world and has worked wonders in developing competition tracking. His plans for Airtribune include expanding the device types accepted, allowing personal use, exporting features to link to SeeYou, new functions for event organisers and new ways to deliver results through iOS and Android apps, plus a new leaderboard integrating leadput points to see a task's true leader.

Airtribune is also able to supply reliable and easy-to-use Flymaster 360 trackers in sets of 20 - 150, ready to go. Costs vary but you can expect to pay around 15 euro per tracker per week, inclusive of all data. Currently they are offering 30% off rentals and half-price access to the tracking service.

Posted: 23 October 2017
By: Paul Dancey


Skywings news last updated: 7 December 2017 at 11:16:05 AM

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