British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

Skywings Archived News

Skywings Archived News - Feb 2015

Southend gets Class D airspace

The CAA has agreed to the imposition of Class D airspace around London Southend Airport (LSA) with effect from April 2nd 2015.
click for a higher res version showing the extent of the airspace that will become live on 1st April 2015
The new airspace features a control zone (CTR) around the airport itself from the surface up to 3,500ft, and a larger control area (CTA) from 1,500ft to 3,500ft. LSA has seen a significant increase in commercial air transport movements in the last three years, and the CAA agreed with the LSA view that the new airspace was necessary to enhance the protection given to these flights. The new airspace will be reviewed six months after implementation to ensure that it is working as anticipated.

Note that a further tranche of Class D airspace could be implemented before April 2nd 2017 without further consultation, following the submission of a separate Airspace Change Proposal from LSA.

The full text of the CAA's decision can be found on the CAA website.

Posted: 11 February 2015

Twin Pilots Challenge Altitude World Record - Sustainably

On the 15 - 20 February 2015, twin brothers, Tim and Ant Green will be attempting to break the altitude world record for tandem powered paragliders by flying side-by-side to over 16,400 ft (5,000m) above Western Europe’s highest mountain, Mont Blanc, 15,780 ft (4,810m).
Tim and Ant Green
Once at the summit, Ant will then swoop down to drop a free-ride skier on the top of the mountain – who will then ski the 12,500ft (3,810m) back to the valley floor.

They intend to produce a unique film of their one-off record-breaking aerial and skiing adventure, with Europe's most beautiful mountain scenery as their backdrop.

Taking advantage of a stable winter air mass over Mont Blanc, the team of six air and mountain-sports professionals will first establish a base camp in the Vallée Blanche below the Aiguille du Midi at 11,154 ft (3,400m).

They will need several days to get acclimated to the altitude while they test and tune the equipment for the world record attempt. As the adventure unfolds, they will stream the story in real-time online through Epic TV and social media.

When their dedicated mountain meteorologist gives the green light, they will take advantage of the perfect weather window to fly synchronized into the freezing, oxygen deprived heights - pushing themselves past their limits to accomplish the world record together.

They will also attempt to break this record using a sustainably-sourced biofuel, called Bioéthanol. Bioéthanol is created from a fermentation process using flour, corn and beetroot.

This will substantially reduce their carbon footprint on the mountain and show how far a 'Green' fuel can take them.

You can watch this all unfold on the kickstarter website

Posted: 11 February 2015

Parabatix Dubai

Despite difficullt weather the second Parabatix Dubai event in December saw some really intense flying. The event was won by French pilot Jeremy Penone who beat contestants from Spain, France, the Netherlands, Czech Republic, UAE, USA and UK.

Sole Brit entrant Dean Eldridge finished in 5th place.

The event kicked off with a high-wind contest in which groundspeeds were close to zero, although turning downwind saw pilots drifting rapidly away from the action. On another day the entire competition relocated 40km into the desert to fly a special course.

Parabatix organiser Pascal Campbell-Jones pronounced himself happy with the second Dubai version of the contest that began in 2010 with the goal of promoting of air sports in the world's most spectacular locations. "After eight years of practice I just want to have fun," commented Dean Eldridge. "This is my first time at Parabatix Dubai and I'm glad to be here!"

Posted: 29 January 2015

Mark Morgan record

More detail on Mark Morgan's world paramotor climb record reported briefly last month. During a very short weather window on November 29th, Mark took just 18 minutes 53 seconds to climb to 3,000m aboard his Bailey Matrix Hornet/Ozone Viper 3 26m outfit.

This beats existing record holder Jason Whitehead's 2013 time of 22:10 time by almost 15%. After many e-mails to the CAA's Airspace Utilisation Section Mark was able to secure a Notamed area over Selsey Bill in West Sussex for the attempt.

Fellow UK Paramotor Team pilot Barry Holleran, assisting as Official Observer, offered the use of his own take-off site behind his house. Jim 'Speedmouse' Aggiss helped out by locating two barometric loggers from the gliding club at RAF Odiham, and paramotor pilot Martin Horne recorded much of the attempt on video.

After the flight Mark reported: "This was a suck-it-and-see flight for testing purposes, mainly to work out how to download all the data and see how far I'd have to go to actually attack the record. I was taking it easy on the engine which wasn't tuned to the limit as I'd only just run it in. I know I can go faster, but I'm not sure yet if I will be able to beat my own time by the required 3% margin."

Mark is planning another attempt on the record early this year, plus the solo time to 6,000m, tandem time to 3,000m and absolute altitude record, set at 24,895ft by Ramon Morillas in 2009.

Posted: 29 January 2015

2016 Microlight Worlds for UK

The UK bid to run the 2016 Microlight World Championships at Damyn's Hall aerodrome in Essex, headed by event director Rob Hughes, has been accepted by CIMA.

The event will take place on August 20th - 26th, with Barney Townsend and John Waite as deputy event directors and Mike Chilvers directing the paramotor competition.

Over the last decade Damyn's Hall has become one of London's premier GA airfields, with full-time day operations by fixed-wing aircraft, microlights and helicopters and three resident flying schools. Its excellent facilities and location near the M25 make it an ideal Worlds venue, and the organisers are to be congratulated on securing the event.

Posted: 29 January 2015

RAeC bursaries reminder

Applications for this year's Royal Aero Club Trust bursaries close on March 31st.

In 2014 year the Trust awarded 28 bursaries to young airsports enthusiasts to help them advance in their chosen field. This year the minimum age has been lowered to 14 and follow-on bursaries for further advancement up to age 24 have been added.

The awards, of up to £1,000, are to help younger pilots reach the next level in their chosen airsport. If you are aged between 14 and 21 and financial assistance would help you progress, go to Every young BHPA pilot should apply!

Posted: 29 January 2015

BHPA AGM reminder

The 2015 BHPA AGM will take place at the Belfry Hotel, Nottingham (adjacent to Junction 26 of the M1) on Saturday 7th March 2015 in tandem with the BGA's AGM and trade exhibition.

Posted: 29 January 2015


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