View Full Version : Training - Southend Airport
7th Feb 2003, 23:16
Long time since I did my training at SLAC and TEFC and it is a bit of a long way to check out. :eek:
Have friend looking to do PPL. Anyone give me the pro's and con's of flight training on the field. What are costs and landing fee's these days? Which are the best schools. :confused:
Many Thanks, Paul Wright:
Well, things have changed a bit! TEFC is still there in name, but I don't know if they have any aircraft.
Southend Flying Club is still there. Aviators is there (in what was Routair and other names) and I think may now have another new name. Seawing is still there. There are more. I've had dealings with them all, and not had any problems. Depends a bit on which instructor you get, and whether or not the student and the instructor hit it off.
Landing fees are £14.98 for the first landing in a session for based aircraft, with a slight discount thereafter for circuits and go-arounds.
I'm in a group on an Arrow 3, and we've moved from our personal tiedowns at Aviators to the parking free-for-all on the apron, because of vandalism at places on the Eastern taxiway.
The NDB is still there, and there's now an ILS. Approach and Tower, plus Departure ATIS. The Ground frequency isn't used any more. Radar is back.
I finished off my PPL with Willowair. James Meson is their main instructor (CFI I assume) and would highly recommend him if you want someone who is competent but very easy going.
(If you're reading this James, you can mail me a tenner ;) )
9th Feb 2003, 12:34
I did my PPL at Southend, started it with Willowair and finished it with SFC.
Its a hard runway, so you should be able to fly all though the year. Its busy enough to be interesting, but not so busy as to be intimidating. Landing fees and circuits are expensive. The training area is just 10 minutes flight to the north so you get a good hours training time. The airfield has good access by road, public transport and is easy to find from the air.
If you go to the Southend Airport Website, there are links to all the schools.
21st Feb 2003, 21:28
Thanks Guys, Will Pass On
21st Feb 2003, 21:54
Seawing... blimey, there's a name from the past. Did my Flying Scholarship with them in 89. Very fond memories. :cool:
Anyone know whether Danny Woolf is still the CFI there; he sent me off for my first solo. Danny, if you ever peruse PPRuNe, thank you. :D
Prof Denzil Dexter
21st Feb 2003, 22:13
Bad news I'm afraid - Danny died a few years ago. :(
21st Feb 2003, 22:57
I'm so sorry to hear that.
For a few moments the memories came flooding back, three weeks as a 'wet behind the ears' Air Cadet, learning how to handle a '150 without bending it. Danny's the only instructor I vividly remember from that whirlwind three weeks, because, to my shame, he sent me off for my first solo straight after I'd disagreed with him on an approach. But it turned out to be probably the most important moment of my flying experience to date.
4th May 1989. I'd flown with Danny all day, once in the morning, twice in the afternoon. On the third session, we'd been doing uneventful touch and go's on 06 for about half an hour, when I called tower on the approach, and for the first time the tower replied something along the lines of "Golf Oscar Charlie, stop landing?" I didn't have a clue what he meant so the onboard conversation went something like this:
BeauMan (to Danny) - What does he mean, 'stop landing'?
DW - Ask him.
BM (confused) - I'll sound like a prat, what's he mean, have I got to go around, or what?
DW - Ask him, come on, get on with it.
BM - But you're here, what's he mean?
DW - For f***'s sake! (to tower) Golf Oscar Charlie, affirm stop landing. (to me) I won't be here all the bloody time!
Approach continues, I land it successfully, exit 06 and taxi to Seawing. I'm convinced I'm about to be canned off the course for arguing with the CFI. Oh the shame of it...
We taxi up, and suddenly Danny says 'Stop here'. We're still on the eastern taxiway, 'this is odd' thinks I, but I apply the brakes and pull out my checklist for the shutdown checks. Danny's already got his harness undone, door open, hops out, tidies the harness, and gathers his stuff.
DW - "Right then smartarse, off you go."
I look at him blankly.
DW - "All yours. I don't want to see you again until you've solo'd it."
I have never been so terrified in my life, but it lasted just a second, until Danny slammed his door shut and waved me off. At that point, the training took over, and I flew a perfect (well it seemed like it to me) circuit.
As I taxied in, the first person to greet me was Danny. All smiles, he shook my hand and said well done, and never mentioned the disagreement.
I wasn't canned, and left Southend a couple of weeks later with a Flying Scholarship under my belt. But I never forgot that incident. It's stayed with me ever since. If in doubt, ASK. The only stupid question is the one you choose not to ask.
Final 3 Greens
22nd Feb 2003, 13:41
Danny signed off my GFT.
Underneath the gruff approach was a great bloke, all you had to do was listen carefully and you learnt an awful lot.