May 2014

In This Issue

  • The ABC of Map Reading 1940’s Style

  • Have you made your objection to the Farnborough airspace grab yet?

  • The LAA Goodwood Fly-in on the 24th and 25th of May 2014

  • Flight to France, weekend 4th and 5th April by Clive Innocent

  • Your next aircraft an electric Airbus?

  • Last Month’s Meeting: Bob Bevan from Viscover

The ABC of Map Reading 1940’s Style

Front page of ABC of Map-Reading in the UK

Picked up from Flyer Forum, from QDMQDMQDM: “This is a treat. It’s a wonderful 1944 navigation manual for US airmen in Europe, given to me by a patient of mine who was a WW2 RAF navigation instructor. It will make you smile. Please feel free to spread far and wide — I don’t think there are any other copies in existence. (It’s formatted for double-sided printing, which is why it’s on its side.)”

Download it by clicking here.

The advice is every bit as relevant today!

Have you made your objection to the TAG Farnborough airspace grab yet?

If you are still wondering what the issue is about, have a look at this detailed analysis by Southdown Gliding Club.

Also the brilliantly argued response from PPL/IR

To make your objection you have to visit this website:  You have until 12th May 2014.  It requires more effort than just adding your name to a petition but it is really important.

The LAA Goodwood Fly-in on the 24th and 25th of May 2014

Poster for the LAA Goodwood event

We have now all the details we think but if you have any extra questions then please ask.


We took names at club night 2 months ago of those people who volunteered to marshal at the event but we need a few more as the organisers are suggesting 4 marshals on duty to park the arriving planes, I think that a 2 hours on and 2 hours off would be acceptable and maybe less people when it is quiet. So it makes sense if we can have 8 people per day, if you intend to either drive in or fly in to the meeting the strut would welcome your assistance for say 2 hours. Please send me your name and mobile number with what day or days you would be available and approximately when you will be on site, if we have enough people then the people that care the most will not have to marshal all day and will be able to look around. If you have never marshalled then you will be given a short instruction session, so don’t be frightened not to volunteer, it will be only about 3 signals that you need to remember. We will also need some volunteers for Friday for setting up so if you are local or will be arriving Friday to camp then please advise what you can offer.

Camping, food, events etc

Visitors will be able to camp from Friday night through to Sunday, this is free I believe but please book in with Goodwood on 01243755087 with what nights you will be staying.

The Aeroclub will be open for food etc. from 07.30 to 22.30 on the Saturday and 07.30 to 18.00 on Sunday.

Goodwood have laid on a very special BBQ on the Saturday Night, it will be prepared and cooked by the Goodwood Chef and staff and will consist of meat, fish, salad, potatoes etc with a pudding. This will cost £15 a head but promises to be good value, you will need to book the number of BBQ,s you require with Angela at Goodwood on 01243755087 but please do this as soon as you have made your mind up.

For those of you who have never been (or not for a long time) to the museum at Tangmere then this is a great opportunity because a free minibus is to be laid on to take people to and fro during the 2 days.

Airfield Info.

All normal approach procedures will be in place, i.e. FIS and they will have extra controllers on duty.  The Airfield will be open for business from 07.30 to 20.30 on the Saturday and 07.30 to 19.30 on the Sunday, once you have landed please follow the instructions of the marshals who will park you (see above)

Avgas and UL91 is available from the self service pumps and a bowser will also be provided.

Finally, we have a great opportunity to fly the LAA Southern Strut flag at this event, we have been provided with one of the best locations in the world for such event with no cost to ourselves apart from a bit of effort, so please support the LAA and the strut by coming and having a great time.

I will not be able to come to the May club meeting as I have a pre-arranged event but please give your names, mobile number and when you will be available for marshalling etc to Richard Griffiths.  [Email me through the ‘Contact’ menu above; select ‘Webmaster’ ED]

Tony Palmer Co-ordinator

Flight to France, weekend 4th and 5th April

A group of us in various types of aircraft had decided to fly to Amiens on the Somme for a weekend away. It was planned to fly over on Friday and do some local flying on Saturday, with our return flight on Sunday.

Due to the weather predicted to deteriorate on Sunday, we still planned to go but we would fly back on Saturday to ensure we missed the bad weather.

We met at Headcorn from various locations, including Derby, Sheffield, Hereford, Kent and myself from Hadfold Farm just South of Billingshurst. After lunch at Headcorn we took off at intervals and asked for flight plans to be activated. Due to our varied speed ranges we soon split up, so that when I coasted out at Dymchurch I could hardly see the aircraft in front of me. That was Adrian in his Zenair Zodiac, who was a good deal more slippery than my Escapade !

View of coast from aircraft.

Coasting in at Bologne

I crossed at 3,500ft in a gloriously smooth clear sky. I coasted in at Bologne harbour and flew though the airspace gap between Calais and LeTouquet, then set a course for Amiens and enjoyed the view, which was slightly hazey.

Approaching Amien airfield, I could see the various different colours of the earth where many years ago in WW1, trenches were dug and the landscape obliterated by explosives. I used my very poor, but rehearsed French to join the circuit and landed on the 1,000yd grass runway in preference to the 1,800yd tarmac one. I always use grass when I can in my taildragger.

A yello and white Escapade aircraft parked on grass.

Our Escapades at Amiens

After parking and meeting the local flying school staff, we jumped on a bus and went into town for dinner and a few beers. Return was very late, so we took a cab back to the airfield, where we were able to sleep in the centrally heated club room inside the main hangar (very cozy ! )

Woken by the bright sunlight shining through the windows, we had coffee, then stowed the aeroplanes and made ready to return home. We all wanted fuel, and as it was Saturday and no petrol available from the pumps, we drove to the local garage to get some. We were given the use of a large van, and borrowed about half a dozen 25 litre plastic drums. Can you see a garage in England allowing you to fill 150 litres into plastic drums ? !

We were soon taking off on at a time as we were ready and on our way home. The sky was still clear blue, but as I coasted out over the Channel, I couldn’t quite see the English coast. After leaving Lille Information for London Information, I remained with them most of the way home, receiving a Basic Service which gave me constant weather updates for my flight direct to Hadfold Farm. Passing Dungeness at 4,500ft I reduced power, applied carb heat and descended to coast in at Hastings under a 1,200ft cloud base. I didn’t fancy going over the top and getting stuck up there ! I flew all the way from Hastings to Billingshurst at 1,000ft, popping in and out of white-outs which only lasted 20 seconds or so, so not dangerous.

As I joined for an abbreviated circuit at home due to now being forced down to 800ft in drizzle, and was greeted by a 10 to 15mph crosswind of 45 degrees. Over the trees on 23 and a lovely three pointer. Then it would be a good touchdown, as there was no one to see it!

Three aircraft parked on grass.

The whole group

A great trip which was most enjoyable, in excellent company.  My flight time there and back was almost exactly 5 hours.

I love flying over to France, and if I don’t do it before, I shall be going over to St Omer in September. Can’t miss that one !


Clive Innocent ( G-PADE )

Your next aircraft an electric Airbus?

Group of people standing in front of E-Fan airgraft and giving a thumbs-up.

Bordeaux, 25 April 2014 – The successful first public flight of the electric E-Fan experimental aircraft

The electric E-Fan training aircraft is a highly innovative technology experimental demonstrator based on an all-composite construction. Airbus Group and its partners are aiming to perform research and development to construct a series version of the E-Fan and propose an industrial plan for a production facility close to Bordeaux Airport.

This may be the shape of things to come.  Have a look at this video.

Last Month’s Meeting: Bob Bevan from Viscover

Last month’s meeting didn’t start well.  The Swiss Cottage had double booked the lounge bar for a wedding reception, so the only option was for Bob to give his talk in the main bar.  Well, if the test of an insurance company is how they deal with a crisis, Visicover passed with flying colours!  Bob was completely un-fazed by the challenge and gave an excellent presentation.

The topic of aviation insurance my not seem the most interesting, but with the average cost being something like £1,300 for an aircraft and £8,000 for a helicopter, and you are the one paying, then getting the best price and value for money does have a certain compulsion.

The inspiration to set up Visicover came from the other founder, Jan Houlberg, a PPL with IR (and his wife has a PPL too) who wondered why buying aviation insurance couldn’t be as straightforward as car insurance.  As he runs a software company that supports car insurance firms, perhaps that question wasn’t so surprising, and, he happened to be the guy to answer it.  In partnership with Bob Bevan, who has nearly 30 years experience in the insurance industry, including setting up ‘direct’ insurance operations, they started Visicover Ltd in August last year.

The key thing to understand about this operation is that while the shop-front (through the web) might be different, the back end is exactly the same as other insurers, with a well established underwriter (AIG) and claims being handled by the same loss adjuster agents as other insurance companies.  For many customers with straightforward requirements the automated purchase, only through the website, will be quick and easy.  The saved selling costs can be shared between the customer in reduced premiums and Visicover as profit.  For people with less straightforward requirements, Visicover may not be for them and they will need to talk to a traditional broker.

After describing the company start-up, Bob talked about general insurance issues including:

  • ‘Combined single limit’ vs. ‘split liability limit’.  If you ever give a ride to a ‘high net worth individual’ check what sort of liability you have – your relatives may thank you.
  • Upping your excess will make a significant difference to your premium; insurance companies really don’t like small claims as their overheads are disproportionate.
  • Including ‘betterment’ in your cover is likely to be an extremely good idea.

He finished of with a brief look over the horizon.  Things likely to effect the light aviation insurance industry include; deregulation, use of exotic construction materials, the impact of UAV’s (no pun intended…), and the potential benefits of EU harmonisation.

Visit Visicover at


For a list of the currently planned events look under the menu above or click this link: Events

Next Strut meeting: Wednesday 7th May, Swiss Cottage pub, beer ‘n chat.

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