Junior Glider Pilot Elliot Goes Solo

On Thursday, Junior sailplane pilot Elliot flew his first solo flight in a glider launched from Stratford on Avon Gliding club.


Elliot, who has been learning to fly at Snitterfield Airfield, launched on the winch in K13 G-DCBW and promptly went off for a 30 minute soaring flight above the Warwickshire countryside.

Stratford on Avon Gliding club is a Junior Gliding centre offering a range of programs and opportunities for young pilots aged 14-26 to take part in sport aviation at discounted cost.

Well done Elliot!

Owen Converts onto the SZD Junior

Well done to Stratford junior sailplane pilot Owen who converted onto the SZD Junior over the weekend.

G-CHDB, one of three single-seat gliders on the Stratford on Avon Gliding Club fleet is Owen’s first single-seat aircraft type.

Owen [seated] converts into the SZD Junior

He went on, the same day, to achieve his two-hour soaring duration flight towards his Bronze C cross-country endorsement.

We think he would have his FAI silver height gain as well if he’d been carrying a flight logger!

14 year old pilot Kai goes solo at Stratford on Avon Gliding Club!

14 year old junior glider pilot Kai flew his first solo flight at Stratford on Avon Gliding Club on bank holiday Monday!

Kai is our fourth junior glider pilot to go solo at Stratford on Avon GC in August!

14 year old pilot Kai goes solo at Stratford on Avon Gliding Club!

14 year old junior glider pilot Kai flew his first solo flight at Stratford on Avon Gliding Club on Sunday!Kai is our fourth junior glider pilot to go solo at Stratford on Avon GC in August!Kai flew his first solo just over five years after his older brother Jesal first flew solo with us. He was greeted on landing back at Snitterfield by his father, an airline pilot himself. Aviation clearly runs in the family!#gliding #juniorgliding #youthinaviation #sailplanes British Gliding Association

Posted by Stratford on Avon Gliding Club on Tuesday, 1 September 2020

Kai was put through his paces on bank holiday Monday morning by senior Stratford flight instructor Barry K who then cleared him to launch in K13 G-DCBW on his first solo flight as pilot in command!

Kai flew his first solo just over five years after his older brother Jesal first flew solo with us. He was greeted on landing back at Snitterfield by his father, an airline pilot himself. Aviation clearly runs in the family!

Well done Kai!

Junior Glider Pilot Tom Goes Solo At SoAGC!

Congratulations to Stratford’s junior glider pilot Tom who flew his first solo flight in K13 glider G-DCBW on Saturday at Stratford on Avon Gliding Club!

Junior Pilot Tom Goes Solo At Snitterfield

Congratulations to junior glider pilot Tom who flew his first solo flight in K13 glider G-DCBW from Snitterfield on Saturday!Tom's parents were on hand to watch as he made a brief soaring flight followed by a great landing.#gliding #soaring #sailplanes #aviation #youthinaviation #juniorgliding British Gliding Association

Posted by Stratford on Avon Gliding Club on Sunday, 16 August 2020

Tom was checked out and cleared for solo by Stratford’s Deputy CFI Pete F.

Tom’s parents were on hand to watch as he flew a brief soaring flight followed by a great landing back at Snitterfield!

Well done Tom!

Junior Glider Pilot Matthew goes Solo

On Sunday, junior glider pilot Matthew S flew his first solo flight from Stratford on Avon Gliding Club!

Matthew was checked and cleared for his first solo by senior instructor and club chairman Andy B.

Junior Pilot Matthew Goes Solo At SoAGC

On Sunday, junior glider pilot Matthew S flew his first solo from Stratford on Avon Gliding Club!Matthew had a brief soaring flight in our K13 before landing back at Snitterfield to be congratulated by his dad.Well done Matthew!#gliding #soaring #juniorgliding #youthinaviation British Gliding Association

Posted by Stratford on Avon Gliding Club on Monday, 10 August 2020



Matthew had a brief soaring flight in K13 G-DCBW before landing back at Snitterfield to be congratulated by his dad.

Well done Matthew!

Junior Glider Pilot Archie Achieves Silver

On Monday, junior glider pilot Archie L completed his FAI Silver badge flying from Stratford on Avon Gliding Club.

The FAI Silver badge requires that a sailplane pilot complete:

A soaring flight of 5 hours duration.
A cross-county flight of at least 50km from the point of release.
A height gain of at least 1000m above the previous lowest point.

Archie’s Silver flight log


Archie achieved all three of these goals on a flight which took him south-east to Bicester airfield before returning to Snitterfield.

As well as completing all three silver legs for a single claim in one flight, the out-and-return distance of ~107km also qualifies for the UK 100km Diploma part 1.

This on a day where conditions meant some of our advanced cross-country pilots were unable to complete their own cross-country tasks.

Well done Archie!

A trip to the seaside in a glider

This is a flight I’d been wanting to make for some while, and I was just waiting for the right day. As Midlanders we don’t get to see the seaside very often (other than by car), but it was 185km to Weymouth, a 370km round trip, so it needed to be a good day. In the middle of last week, the weather started to look promising – a north westerly but not too strong and good soaring conditions particularly in the south.

I continued to watch the forecasts as the weekend got closer, and then on the day I was sure it looked on. A bit weak in the midlands to start with, but I felt sure that if I could get away from here then I’d find better conditions in the south and as the day went on the conditions would improve in the midlands for the trip back into wind.

I would just need to stay high and lift should remain good late on into the afternoon.

When I arrive at site most of the other cross county pilots seemed to be focused on the first 300k flight of the year following the resumption of the club ladder. I didn’t want to get caught up in all that – I was determined to fly my own flight.

I didn’t launch until 1.15 having been on the winch first thing and as a result finding myself last on the grid. Getting away was a real struggle, the sky was not very promising, and it took me 15 minutes to just get back to launch height climbing in broken lift at half a knot here, and half a knot there.

Eventually I found something more solid (thanks 777) and then climbed steadily to 4500 at an average of 4knots. The sky was looking better by now, so I immediately set off. A 4knot climb at Broadway to over 5000’ and then another good one at Cirencester (which I had to break off to avoid drifting into the South Cerny Parachute Drop Zone) set me well on the way. At Trowbridge with the sea now clearly visible in the distance I found a 2200’ 5knot climb.

The sky south of Trowbridge

Each time having got to near cloud base I had been able to then cruise in lift beneath the clouds turning lift into speed and this together with the tail wind was making for good task speed. Further south at Blandford I now had a bit of a blue hole to deal with and the clouds ahead were not looking so promising. I found a 4knot climb under a large Cu and took it to 6200’.

This got me to Dorchester at 5000’ and with about 12km to run to Weymouth I could see some straggly cloud a 1000’ or so beneath the cumulus a couple of km ahead – this looked like a sea-breeze front and so I headed for it – sure enough another 4+ knot climb to 5600’.

The view from Dorchester – Weymouth and Portland Bill.
Note the straggly clouds beneath the Cu ahead indicating a sea-breeze front.
Weymouth and Portland Bill

I then had the 10km glide into and back from Weymouth in relatively still air – losing some 2500’ before getting back to the sea-breeze front and some reliable though relatively weak lift. I worked my way north with the sky ahead looking great but only finding weak 2.5-3knot climbs.

The south coast looking east. Lots of cruise ships at anchor in the bay.

I was convinced better conditions lay ahead and so kept breaking off these ‘weak’ climbs to push on – working in a height band 3500-4500.

Then at Trowbridge 6.5kts from 3400’ to 6200’. Now we were cooking! From there with lots of large Cu and a fantastic sky ahead I was able to cruise along at 80-90kts between the clouds, pulling up in the lift but not generally turning so as to maintain height between 4500’ and 5500’. I was conscious that it was now 4pm and getting low (below perhaps 3000’) could be a real problem. I needn’t have worried, on last climb to 6000’ just south of Cirencester and then cruising on until I got to Chedworth where suddenly I was on final glide.

I was flying with 18m tips, no water ballast, cruising speed around 80kts and a McCreedy setting of 2.

Total task distance 372km in 3 hours 59 minutes at a speed of 92.5kph.

All in all a grand day out!

Flight on bgaladder.net

Ben E completes Silver + 100km Diploma

Yesterday, junior glider pilot Ben E completed his FAI Silver badge plus his UK 100km Diploma parts 1 & 2 during a flight from Stratford on Avon Gliding Club.

The Silver badge requires: A height gain of 1000meters or more, a duration flight of at least 5hours and a distance flight at least 50km from the launch site.

Ben had previously completed the height and duration requirements and yesterday finished the badge with a flight from Snitterfield to Nympsfield 68.5km away.

On arriving overhead Nympsfield, he flew back up to Snitterfield for a total task distance of 137km. This completed ‘leg 1’ of the UK 100km gliding diploma.

He completed the flight at a speed of 73kph which, calculated for the aircraft handicap gives a handicap speed of 68kph. This completes the second leg of the 100km diploma!

Three in one flight, Well done Ben!

Ed F Converts into the Astir

Congratulations to junior glider pilot Ed F who converted into Stratford on Avon Gliding club’s Astir CS77 today, launching from Snitterfield airfield.

The Astir is Ed’s second single-seat glider type and presents a more complex type with retractable undercarriage and water ballast systems.

Junior Glider Pilot Ed F Converts into the Astir

Congratulations to junior sailplane pilot Ed F who converted into Stratford on Avon Gliding Club's Astir CS77 today at Snitterfield.The Astir is Ed's second single-seat glider and presents a more advanced type with both retractable undercarriage and water-ballast systems.#gliding #juniorgliding #sailplanes #youthinaviation

Posted by Stratford on Avon Gliding Club on Monday, 20 July 2020