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British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

Skywings News

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Skywings News - all non archived years

Skywings Safety Matters Articles

A selection of the safety issues highlighted in Skywings each month is now available online. An initial batch of 10 articles has been uploaded to the BHPA website, and can be found on the new Skywing Safety Matters page. Further articles will be added in due course.

The long term aim is to create a readily accessible depository of the safety information carried in Skywings each month. As well as being a useful resource for members in general, this repository will allow new members to access important safety information published in Skywings before they joined the Association.

Posted: 17 May 2021
By: Paul Dancey

BHPA Digital Membership Cards

Over the last few months the BHPA has been working on the introduction of digital membership cards, and is now in a position to roll this out to our members.

Emails will be sent out shortly from no-reply@members.bhpa.co.uk providing a link to the new free membership app. Once downloaded you will be required to set-up a password enabling you to view a digital version of your current membership card.

If you need to update your email details with us please notify the office (office@bhpa.co.uk) quoting your membership number and full name.

Paper copies of the membership cards will still be issued for the foreseeable future.

Posted: 11 May 2021
By: Paul Dancey

The May 2021 issue of Skywings is now available

The May 2021 issue of Skywings magazine has now been published and is available on the Skywings page on the BHPA website.

The printed version has been posted and should shortly drop through your letter box.

Posted: 10 May 2021
By: Paul Dancey

Icarus Cup to go ahead

Icarus Cup 2021 The British Human Powered Flying Club will go ahead with this year's annual Icarus Cup competition for HPAs. The event will run at either Sywell or Lasham from July 24th to August 1st. Marshalls are required to assist with the running of the event; contact Tony Prentice on 01474706405.

Posted: 27 April 2021
By: J. Schofield

Argentina in Nov. for paragliding worlds

The paragliding world championship, originally scheduled for Coeur de Savoie, France, in May, was cancelled in March. Soon afterwards CIVL received a proposal from Loma Bola, Argentina, to run the event in November. Other proposals were sought and soon arrived from GV in Brazil and Roldanillo in Colombia.

Brazil was rejected on account of its problems in grappling with the Covid pandemic; Colombia was thought to be missing too many key elements such as an experienced organising team. The Argentinian proposal then became a formal bid, discussed by CIVL delegates and the paragliding committee.

Although the area is known for stable conditions and sometimes very short tasks, CIVL has agreed that the 17th FAI World Paragliding XC Championships will be at Loma Bola from October 31st to November 13, 2021. Early arrivals are encouraged and supervised training days will be laid on. Let's hope it's a good year down there!

The full story is here.

Posted: 15 April 2021
By: J. Schofield

CAA EC rebate scheme extended

The CAA EC Rebate scheme for Electronic Conspicuity devices has been extended until September 30th, 2021. There is a list of qualifying devices; for free flyers these mostly involve instruments with a FLARM element. Manufacturers currently offering instruments with a FLARM element are Naviter, Skytraxx and XC Tracer.

A Google search for 'CAA electronic conspicuity rebate' will show the relevant CAA page, with further details and the application procedure. You will need to register for a CAA Portal account, then complete identity checks; when the CAA have verified the checks you can complete the rebate form. You'll get 50% of your expenditure back, up to a limit of £250.


Posted: 15 April 2021
By: J. Schofield

Guidance for BHPA Pilots undertaking cross country

The UK Government has confirmed that Step 2 of its roadmap out of lockdown will take place in England no earlier than 12th April. The BHPA has determined that at this point, its pilots holding the appropriate rating can undertake cross country flight if the activity complies with the UK Government's/applicable Devolved Administration or Crown Dependency restrictions on travel and social contact.

In order for an XC flight to take place, the rules restricting non-essential travel must have been lifted. As the countries that make up the UK are easing their "stay at home" and "stay local" restrictions at different rates, our guidance is as follows:

From 12th April, pilots in England and Wales will be able to make XC flights and travel across the England/Wales border when flying, or in order to fly.

For pilots based in Scotland: when travel restrictions are lifted, XC flights outside your local authority area can be made.

Currently, people are not permitted to travel to or from Scotland without reasonable excuse. Leisure flying is not a reasonable excuse.

In Northern Ireland the current restriction limits travel to local only. This precludes XC flying, however a review is due on 15th April.

General advice for cross country flying: Although it appears that COVID 19 cases are generally on a downward trajectory, the virus has not gone away. There are still restrictions limiting people coming together in groups both inside and outside. Every BHPA member carries an individual responsibility to abide by the rules governing the locality in which they intend to fly, and bear in mind that when crossing a border you may be subject to different restrictions. When involved in any flying activity, be it local flying or cross country, please respect social distancing and follow national advice about the protection measures you should be using when outside your home. Plan your retrieve options as well as your flight where possible. Follow national guidance about the use of public transport and use an appropriate face covering and hand sanitiser.

The timetables for the easing of restrictions can be accessed via the links below:
Northern Ireland
Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey: Please refer to each government's website and liaise with the local BHPA club.

When the easing of restrictions permit you to travel outside the UK to fly, follow the Foreign and Commonwealth Office guidance for travellers. Bear in mind that travel disruption is still possible and a resurgence of the virus may bring about national control measures at short notice. Make yourself aware of the flying situation in the country you are travelling to by visiting its national association's website (available for participating European countries through www.ehpu.org).

Posted: 10 April 2021
By: Paul Dancey

Guidance for BHPA dual licence holders

including BHPA registered Air Experience schools and schools providing tandem flights 

The UK Government has confirmed that in line with Step 2 of its roadmap out of lockdown, GA training flights with an instructor can resume. This is currently planned to be no earlier than 12th April in England. Further information can be found on the Government's General Aviation guidance page.

The BHPA has determined that at this point, tandem licence holders can fly with passengers who are not from the same household. The UK Government's/applicable devolved administration's restrictions on travel, social contact and group sizes must be adhered to. The BHPA's currency requirements for dual licence holders is in the Instructor and Coach Newsletter No. 27 on page 5.

Many ground-based aspects of dual hang gliding and paragliding can be conducted whilst maintaining social distancing. This will require careful thought and some pre-planning by the licence holder. Time spent standing directly upwind or downwind of a participant (even if over two metres away) should be minimised or avoided when possible. Side-to-side interaction should be used in preference to upwind/downwind. During the flight and in other situations when social distancing cannot be maintained, participants must wear a face covering.

There is a possibility of transmission of COVID 19 from handling equipment and documents touched by an infected person. You should evaluate the risks and take sensible precautions including frequent hand sanitising and limiting the sharing of equipment that cannot easily be sanitised. You are advised to use appropriately certified passenger helmets that can be cleaned in-between use by different people (following the manufacturer's guidelines) and make available a facility for hand washing with soap, or hand sanitiser. Ask your passengers to inform you if they develop symptoms and follow Government guidance for disinfecting in the case of contact with a person suspected or confirmed to be infected.

Advice on protective measures can be found via the links below (specific to the country you are in):
English Guidance
Northern Ireland guidance
Scotland guidance
Wales guidance

Posted: 8 April 2021
By: Paul Dancey

Skywings News Feed


last updated: 18 November 2023

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