British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

Skywings Archived News

Skywings Archived News - Mar 2008

CAA Mode S Transponder Consultation - March 2008

The following message is from the BGA's Chief Executive, Pete Stratten, and is pretty self explanatory. The meetings should be particularly of interest if you live in, or within traveling distance of, Fife, Hampshire, or Yorkshire.

Many apologies for the extremely short notice.

Tom Hardie
19th March 2008

The recent mode S meeting with CAA at Turweston was attended by 35 air sport pilots. Although the questions from the floor made some impact, the low attendance will not have gone unnoticed by CAA. It is very clear that feedback to CAA on the current mode S proposals is extremely important – even the DAP team agree with that point.

With this in mind, please can I ask you to circulate the following text to your members? The meetings described below are open to all, and those from air sport who attended a meeting at Lasham in 2006 will recall the significant and effective impact that can be made with the regulator when people are willing to stand up and be counted.

Mode S Meetings - 2008
BGA clubs are hosting a number of open meetings with the CAA to hear about the current Mode S consultation process. ALL ARE WELCOME. The meetings (all 7pm) will be at:

  • Portmoak (Scottish Gliding Centre) Thursday 20th March
  • Lasham Friday 4th April
  • Pocklington (Wolds GC) Friday 11th April

Directions to all clubs is available on the BGA web site at

These meetings are a great opportunity for members to engage with the rulemakers and further clarify our airspace needs. We will shortly be providing guidance on how to respond to the consultation, but these meetings will help you to develop your own personal view on how to respond. We are calling on all glider pilots to make a response as was done to such great effect during the first round of consultation and, as such, the BGA urges ALL pilots to try to attend one of the meetings.

More information on the consultation process is on the BGA web site at

Pete Stratten
Chief Executive
British Gliding Association

The CAA Mode S Transponder story so far.....

BHPA subs increase

After eight years, during which careful financial control prevented the need for an increase in subscriptions, it has finally become necessary to raise BHPA subscriptions.

In reality the need has not arisen through rising costs as those have mostly remained well under control. This year we will experience two significant changes to our income stream. The first is the effect of the 2012 Olympics and the removal of UK Sport funding for non-Olympic sports. In 2008 our grant has halved and we anticipate that it will disappear totally in 2009. The second change is that many years ago, when our insurance history was pretty poor, we entered into a profit-sharing agreement with our underwriters. At the time there was no profit nor any prospect of profit, only substantial losses for the underwriter. However, in the last two years underwriters have finally seen modest profits from our business and our broker has invoked the long forgotten profit-sharing deal. Unsurprisingly, having only just moved into profit and seen a substantial portion of that having to be returned to us, at the insurance renewal this year underwriters declined to continue with the profit-sharing arrangement. Changes in the law had also made the arrangement questionable in any event.

The result of these changes is that it has become necessary to raise subscriptions to the levels set out below. The new fees will take effect on April 1st 2008. Schools are required to return any existing membership books that they have immediately. New membership books are in production and will be sent out as soon as they are available.

  • Flying Member £84
  • Flying Member Family Group £75
  • Flying Member Under 18 £64
  • Flying Member Under 16 £46
  • Flying Member in full-time education £64
  • Flying Member over 60 £64
  • Flying Member over 75 £46
  • Non-Flying Member £47
  • Reduction for Pilot rating £7
  • Skywings Magazine subscription £36

All other membership fees and charges including Introductory Membership, Training Membership and supplements for Dual pilots and Instructors are unaffected

Martin Heywood, BHPA Chairman, on behalf of the BHPA Board of Directors.

Offa's Dyke by paramotor?

Welsh Airsports are planning a paramotor trip along the length of Offa's Dyke, the 177-mile barrier built by King Offa of Mercia in the 8th century to mark the border of his kingdom with Wales. From Chepstow the route heads north through some of the most picturesque scenery in Wales, ending at Prestatyn after crossing gorges, woodlands and rolling hills, and the historic border towns of Monmouth, Hay-on-Wye, Knighton, Montgomery and Welshpool. Other sights include Chepstow Castle, Tintern Abbey, Powis Castle and the hilltop fort of Dinas Bran. The trip is planned for some time in the summer, starting near Newport and initially heading for Chepstow. An overnight stop is planned at Knighton, roughly half way, before continuing to Prestatyn. There will be a small charge for a back-up vehicle and driver, dependent on numbers involved. Anyone interested should contact Edi Geczy on 01443 879187 or 0791 402 6004, e-mail

Ozone results

Japan's Yoshiki Oka (Ozone Geo 2) won the DHV1-2 class of the Ozone Caribbean Challenge competition in February. 58 pilots from 13 countries took part in the event in the Dominican Republic. Christos Karalis from Greece won the DHV1 class, US pilot Philip Russman won the DHV2 class (Advance Sigma 6) and Swedish pilot Dag Sundman (Advance Omega 7) won the DHV2-3 class having set the lead on Day 1 with a new site record flight from Casabito to Santiago. Full details are at

Real people - real winners

The BHPA is delighted to announce it will be amongst the beneficiaries of BingoLotto, a new TV game which will raise money for sport and the voluntary sector. BingoLotto will be a weekly game broadcast on digital TV channels Virgin 1 and Challenge. Tickets will be on sale from outlets around the country and will allow viewers to take part in the BingoLotto game from their own homes, with a 1 in 9.5 chance of winning.

BingoLotto has run in Sweden since 1991 where it has raised just under £1bn for charities and sports organisations. At least 20% from each ticket sold in the UK will be distributed to sport and recreation projects up and down the country. Profits from the show will be distributed to the governing and representative bodies of sport and recreation.

The CCPR has signed up to the scheme and the BHPA, as an affiliated organisation, will be in line to receive funding for new activity programmes or special projects like infrastructure improvement and capacity building, for which other funding is currently unavailable. The game will also raise the profile of our own and a wide range of other sports and activities by featuring them on the weekly show and on the BingoLotto website. The BHPA will support the game by promoting it to our members; by providing examples and case studies of how the proceeds have been spent for the TV show; and by identifying current and future hang gliding and paragliding stars to appear on the show when required. The more tickets are sold each week, the more the BHPA benefits.

The game's motto is "Real people. Real winners". It will offer life-enhancing prizes to winners, ranging from tickets for the following week's game through to cars and holidays, to a maximum cash prize of £100,000. BHPA Chairman Martin Heywood believes the investment the BHPA will receive can make a big difference to our members. "It's a win-win thing," he says. "It will provide a source of funding and increased exposure for the sport". BingoLotto cards can be purchased at any newsagents; players then watch the Friday night TV show, hosted by Joe Pasquale and Suzanne Shaw, and play along as the game unfolds live on TV. For more details about the game go to BingoLotto is regulated by the Gambling Commission.


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