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Military Aviation A forum for the professionals who fly military hardware. Also for the backroom boys and girls who support the flying and maintain the equipment, and without whom nothing would ever leave the ground. All armies, navies and air forces of the world equally welcome here.


Old 30th Mar 2018, 11:55
  #21 (permalink)  
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Sounds like the USAF is toying with a similar idea:

"The Air Force plans to put kids into the cockpit to teach them how to fly in hopes of sparking youth interest in aviation as the military struggles with a pilot shortage."

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Old 30th Mar 2018, 13:42
  #22 (permalink)  
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Soloed on a T-31 at HCGIS Detling in 1952, with Piggott one of the instructors, then a flying scholarship in 1953 at Redhill, on Magisters with Gosport tubes (radio? What's that...?) and on to Croydon to finish my PPL on Tiger Moths after the Redhill club closed. Didn't go on with a career in aviation, though always involved with it in various ways.
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 14:30
  #23 (permalink)  
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Beagle, is that 150 still going? I landed at my home airfield in a PA28 around 1993 where an airshow was about to take place. As I climbed out a black Hawk (100 Squadron?) taxied past with the driver waving enthusiastically. He later appeared in the clubhouse and said he had first soloed on said PA28 in 1972, on a flying scholarship IIRC. The PA28 G-AVLT is I think still going and first flew in 1967! Later that day I had 3 CFS instructors up for a trip round the bay and pulled off my best landing ever
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 15:25
  #24 (permalink)  
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rolling20, yes still going! First registered as G-AVVY in Oct 1967, but since re-registered as G-UFLY.

Still smelled brand new when I flew it!

G-AVLT is another 1967 aircraft which is still flying.
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 17:38
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Flying Scholarship at Biggin Hill 1968

First solo in an Aircoupe (G-AROR) after 8:45 at Biggin Hill with Surrey & Kent on 7 Sep 68. I remember that we lodged at a less than salubrious place down the road (Oak Lodge Hotel and Country Club - known as Fenn's Den) and that brown and mild as 1/10d a pint in Westerham.
The club offered a special deal for the extra 5 hours in a Cherokee 140 to get your PPL - 37/10s. It probably costs a bit more than that now.
I had to blag a day off school to get the qualifying cross-country done later on. The deputy head had some difficulty getting his head round the fact that this spotty 17 year old was going to fly solo from Biggin to Stapleford to Ipswich and back but, after speaking to my mum on the phone, he let me go. So, off to get the 94 then the 410 bus to Biggin as I couldn't yet drive.
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 17:42
  #26 (permalink)  
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Separated from my logbooks for the next couple of weeks, but I did my ATC Flying Scholarship PPL at Kidlington on Piper Colt in 1963, with a trip (or 2?) in a Chipmunk (G-AOFF, IIRC) to demonstrate what a proper stall and spin looked like! (I may add details when I’m back home).

Never used the licence, and a year later failed Flying Grading at BRNC Dartmouth, so that was that
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 18:52
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Beagle, I would imagine that G-AVVY and G-AVLT are both like Triggers broom in Only Fools and Horses!
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 19:15
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1958 and a Flying Scholarship at the Midland Aero Club at Birmingham Elmdon on Tiger Moths. It was enough hours to qualify for a PPL and probably helped to get me in to the RAF which led, after a brief 17 years as an RAF pilot, into civil aviation until retirement.

Still eternally grateful to the ATC for giving me the break that I really needed.
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 20:25
  #29 (permalink)  
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This June itll be the 46th anniversary of my first solo at Sywell, on my 17th birthday in a Beagle Pup. My Flying Scholarship was sponsored by the Charles Newton Memorial Trust although there were several military scholarship chaps training there as well. A glittering career with BOAC was thwarted when the RAF foolishly offered me a job based on my 8 O levels whereas Hamble wanted 2 A levels!
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 22:21
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Carlisle - 1969


Passed OASC at Biggin Hill in 1968 and did my CCF Special Flying Award at Carlisle in March 1969, with several others who have remained friends and colleagues over the years. First solo in a Cessna 150 G-AWAW, with spinning done in a Beagle Pup 100 G-AWKO. Then spent the money I had saved for driving lessons on the extra five hours to get my PPL. Like many others, a flying licence before a driving licence.

As Meikleour has said, the prospects in 1970 for aspiring fast jet pilots in the RAF were rather gloomy, so, like many others, off to Hamble on the BOAC/BEA scheme. Retired after 37 years with BA, having flown at least one of the aircraft I always dreamed of flying, a fast jet but sadly not a single seater!

I consider myself immensely fortunate to have had the flying career I did, in my case only possible through the opportunities the Special Flying Award scheme and the BOAC/BEA scheme afforded me.

Like you, I am deeply saddened that keen aviation-minded youngsters of today do not have the same level of opportunity I did, in either civil or military aviation.
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 00:23
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For some reason, my approach to the Royal Air Force was cursed by medical inadequacy of various sorts. For some other reason I joined and qualified anyway.

My first attempt at the gliding course had me spend the first night in a huge dormitory at Hawkinge with the other participants. I became spotty and very itchy during that evening. I spent the next ten days or so in the luxury of the Dover Isolation Hospital, where each bedroom had a view of the town and the English Channel (and of the bedrooms to left and right) through floor-to-ceiling cut-glass windows. The nursing was fabulous. Meanwhile my fellow would-be glider pilots were sent home to fester in private and Hawkinge fell silent for a week. My next attempt at this course went as clockwork.

I attempted the Flying Scholarship at Elstree in the summer holidays of 1957. The weather was frightful and, although I just went solo, the course fell badly behind. With the ordinary weather of autumn and winter, one day per weekend never gave me the continuity even to go solo again. On top of that I arrived on one weekend with so bad a flu that the school opened a disused house on the airfield to find me a bed - a good try but the bedding was damp and the bedroom was unheatable, so once I had stopped sleeping I crept home. Sometime in the winter the powers-that-be agreed that I was costing too much for too little return; end of flying scholarship.

My main impression of the course was that the whole operation was threadbare - a bit financially desperate. I do not remember many instructors, pupils or aircraft. I flew several times with the CFI, the now-famous David Ogilvie. My named instructor was Bill Bailey, who was I think married and lived in a caravan on the airfield. Both exuded a love of aviation and both manfully accommodated the stupidities of a young schoolboy. With Buster11, I am one of only two contributors on this thread to mention the Miles Magister with its Gosport Tube. The aircraft was generally benign, but flying instruction was unavoidably a bit shouty.

David Ogilvie kept a little Comper Swift in a rackety corrugated iron hangar. I used to visit this lonely aircraft quite often. It struck me as rather mean and squat and sorry for itself, representing an aspect of Ogilvie to which I was not directly exposed. I am surprised to find almost no mention of David Ogilvie on PPRuNe.
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 00:54
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1st solo 9th April 1969 at 1125 in GAVER at Roborough. Instructor was Mr W.H.W. Lucas - a huge man, in both physique and character, who must have been about 70 then. He lived off black coffee and digestive biscuits as far as I could ascertain.
Aircraft is still registered, unlike the airfield ...
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 01:20
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I'm a relative youngster looking at previous posts, I was put forward to OASC by my Grammar School CCF Sqn Ldr in late '82 and did the Scholarship at Anglian Flight Training at Norwich Airport in the Summer of '83. The weather was absolutely fantastic but it meant that the whole thing was over and done with in 2 weeks, from zero to PPL!

Both aircraft that I trained in - G-BEYM & G-BFEL have both since been destroyed in accidents, the latter one having collided with an A-10 just a few months after my Schoarship whilst the student was on a solo cross-country.

Despite several attempts I never made it to GD/P in the RAF, I just wasn't interested in the Commissioned side of RAF life, just the flying. However, I'm now flying in the Civvy world so it all turned out well in the end.
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 07:19
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It was at Halfpenny Green in 1973 that I flew the 30 hrs as a 17 yr old. A year or so back, a course photo popped up on Prune. After 19 years in the fast jet fleet, Im still going on a charter fleet. Enjoyed all 45 years, including 15 years on an AEF returning the favour.
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 08:23
  #35 (permalink)  
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Beagle et al , congrats on your Diamond Jubilees.
Preps as well , forgotten you’re 3 ahead . Settling into The Sun , rather than The Fox and Castle ? And thanks for the loan of your ‘ blue zoot suit ‘ in about 1980 .
Summer ’71 , Marshall’s of Cambridge , SFA [a Scout as no ATC locally ].
Report 0900 Mon. Airborne 0930 G-AVKF C150 . 7:20 hrs later, FRI 1745 , Mr Whittaker says ‘ off you go Boi , if you’re not back by 1800 , ATC , Fire , Eng, and I will have gone home ‘.
Loan of 50 got the extra 5 hrs [ back to the bean/pea harvest and bale carting to pay back ] .
Met with Preppy in the Hamble bar 1972 , returned the Boeing keys in ’09 . Last 8 years seeing the seasons change from Wessex skies ; whilst ‘destructing from our rural hilltop in the clouds and crosswinds .
Busman hol’s sees me pulled around by an O-200 in a Permit frame .
Next med. in May , so fingers crossed ; and the waters recede .
Bellerophon , You properly summed it up . Thank you .
‘’I consider myself immensely fortunate to have had the flying career I did, in my case only possible through the opportunities the Special Flying Award scheme and the BOAC/BEA scheme afforded me ‘’.
Here’s to the other half ,
Rgds condor .
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 09:21
  #36 (permalink)  
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One or two have mentioned the price per flying hour on this thread.

I tried to keep my ATC PPL valid but in 1963 at 6 15s for the Chipmunk and 5 5s for an Auster I just couldn't afford it on my 10 per week shift work wage as a "Scientific Assistant" in the Met. Office ........ and the youngsters of today claim that everything was cheap in our days and totally ignore the fact that it''s all relative to income .....
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 09:51
  #37 (permalink)  
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Beagle et al , congrats on your Diamond Jubilees.
condor, you are exaggerating. Golden = 50; another decade for Diamond!
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 10:42
  #38 (permalink)  
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And yet another ATC Scholarship for the Antipodes .. soloed in the Victa January 1967 at RACNSW (Bankstown) .. a bit over 4 hours up .. how I didn't kill myself still remains one of those deep mysteries .. and finished the PPL with Stan Hone at RNAC (West Maitland). Appreciated spending the Queen's dollars on, as I recall, about 60-70 hours before they finally realised I had finished the licence quite some time before ...

A mixed bag of blokes on my course .. one went on to be a 744 captain with Qantas, another (a school mate of mine) an air ranked man of the cloth with the RAAF ... while I just read engineering and flew for a number of operators along the way.

Tossed up whether I would go RAAF but another government scholarship paid more so, on the basis that such would better support the drinking habits, I ended up in the DO on Nomad to start off my career.

Centaurus spent some time enjoying the ACLO job in the RAAF and has more than a few ATC stories to relate ..
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 12:29
  #39 (permalink)  
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Solo on 19th April 1959 at Thruxton on Jackaroo GAPAJ. Only too infrequent flights in a Tiger Moth in full Biggles kit betwixt the Jackaroos before the end of course and a PPL. Other than the licence itself all paid for by HM. A different time that I was lucky enough to inhabit.
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 14:45
  #40 (permalink)  
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And now for something different................I failed!

Went to Hornchurch, did the medical, couldn't hear the high notes in one ear. Aptitude tests seemed okish so did the interview. So the result fail, reason when looking at a distance eyes came together therefore under pressure might see 2 runways. However when you turn 18 come back again.
Father wheels me off to his optician, can't find any fault.
So no hope of free lessons but come National service time back to Hornchurch. Do medical still can't hear the high notes, do some aptitude tests and the interview, pass. So to day three playing rivers and short planks. Result:- Would you like to be a navigator?
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