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Flying Club/tuition shuts down in Aberdeen

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Flying Club/tuition shuts down in Aberdeen

Old 3rd Aug 2008, 09:55
  #41 (permalink)  
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Location: Aberdeen, UK
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Originally Posted by bad bear
Why not move the flying club to Fordoun or Edzell
Dunno about Edzell, but Fordoun is covered in containers/equipment/machinery and is definately unavailable for use by aircraft.
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Old 3rd Aug 2008, 10:20
  #42 (permalink)  
 
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Edzell and Fordoun

I am sure the farmer would move the containers etc if someone were to offer similar money to that which was being paid to ABZ airport. Last time I landed there the runway was not great but was useable. Edzell has had a lot of the radar stuff removed and given the hard time farmers are having (I am from a farming family) a bit of extra money might make a new airfield open up.Farmers are quite keen on diversification
bb
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Old 3rd Aug 2008, 11:41
  #43 (permalink)  
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How long ago did you land there??? There's buildings and all sorts of stuff along the entire length - see the satellite pick on live.com:

Web browser and Live Maps are incompatible

That's pretty much how it still is. It's a retail/business 'park' now with several businesses on site.
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Old 3rd Aug 2008, 14:37
  #44 (permalink)  
 
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For flight training you still need to operate from a licensed airfield, but I believe that under EASA that may change in the future. Edzell would be prefect if somebody could convert it back to it's former use.
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Old 3rd Aug 2008, 14:48
  #45 (permalink)  
 
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Edzell has about 600 metres of useable runway. I measured it not less than 2 months ago on behalf of a friend. The tarmac is in good condition and would take any light aircraft no problem. The trees to the south end of the runway would cause a few problems though, they must be 50 to 100 feet tall. I did hear however that more pipe's were going to be stored there, but not sure if thats for definate. Theres also the problem of no hangerage.

As for Fordoun, forget it, theres nothing left usable there.

Last edited by MIKECR; 3rd Aug 2008 at 16:39.
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Old 8th Aug 2008, 19:41
  #46 (permalink)  
 
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Why would a flying club with no instructors succeed at Edzell anymore than one with no instructors at ABZ?
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Old 8th Aug 2008, 19:48
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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Mr Geezer ......

However quite a few of my exploits were done in order to get me out of the road at the request of ATC.
Ah - that would explain turning finals over the numbers!
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Old 9th Aug 2008, 08:18
  #48 (permalink)  
 
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Plenty guys up here would gladly renew old instructor ratings if a really good facility were to become available nearby. They simply let the ratings lapse as the effort and cost involved in renewing them was not worth what they got back from a few odd hours of holding at echo one for a slot to depart at Aberdeen. I dont know how long ago you trained at Aberdeen papa600, but only a few years ago we had plenty part time instructors up here.
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Old 10th Aug 2008, 07:07
  #49 (permalink)  
 
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Not that long ago YSW I was learning when there were at least half a dozen instructors available and more or less always two on duty over a weekend and during the week on demand. However most (all?) of these guys now have airline jobs and there was no one else coming in to replace them (young wannabe's doing the hour building as instructors). I went to enquire about converting to the Warrior 18 months ago and was given a list of mobile telephone numbers of instructors and told that was the best way of contacting them. It took a couple of weeks to tie someone down to doing the conversion. If I was learning how does that provide adequate / suitable training?

I think it is really sad that there is no longer a training organsation at ABZ as that is where the future GA community lies. I can't see anyone relocating to ABZ with a new group or with a private A/C if they have not learned there or there is no bonafide club established.

However I still maintain that the Signature issue, although real and significant, is a bit of a smokescreen for more fundemental problems resulting in the clubs demise i.e. no "readily available" instructors, no structure as a club and ultimately no client base.

I think it was a brave attempt by Grampian to keep the club running in some form and they are to be commended for that but ultimately it was not a suitable format for a training organisation and flying club other than for renters of whom there were not enough to sustain a business.
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Old 10th Aug 2008, 10:16
  #50 (permalink)  
 
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There are plans afoot to create a club in Aberdeen initially for the social side of aviation. It will be open to anyone who wishes to join. Details are going to be available soon.

It is unlikely that this will be a Flying Training Organisation - there are no available aircraft and given the past difficulties with costs (parking 200 per month, fuel prices etc), and the usual 'how to make a small fortune in aviation ...' caveat, unless one of the members wins the lottery that may not change for the near future.

It costs not insignificant amounts of money for instructors to keep up their rating. When moving to their first type rated jobs all the instructors have been enthusiastic to keep up something which they have enjoyed but when the time comes for them to renew it isn't cost effective for them! And I don't blame them, there are much more important things for them to be spending their money on

As one of the group owners I understand exactly how much it costs to run an aeroplane. Not withstanding the 20 + landing fees, the costs of holding at E1 for traffic for 40 mins, only being able to do one circuit in an hour, not being able to get in the circuit due to other traffic, the parking costs, no permanent maintenance facilities ...

There are many reasons why it's been so hard to run a club in Aberdeen. But it does all boil down to money. So, which of you won the lottery last night?
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Old 18th Aug 2008, 10:30
  #51 (permalink)  
 
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I too am sorry to hear of the club's demise. I started flying with Pegasus in 1983 and remember it fondly especially G-BFJM and my first solo (I seem to remember it was destroyed in an accident at Aboyne).Kevin Wigginton and Fiona Payton (nee Fraser) where are you now?GS
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Old 18th Aug 2008, 10:50
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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There is a thread in aviation history etc which has some history on the various people associated with the club(s) over the last 20 plus years.

But in that time I don't think there has been a period of more than 3 years where it has had a single corporate owner since Peter Forbes. That must say that Signature whilst the instigator of this last change are only one factor.

It is a difficult environment due to the amount of commerical traffic and the various parties involved - most of whom see light aircraft as no more than an inconvenience. Aberdeen is not a terribly 'clubby' type of place, the microlight club has had a few ups and downs, the PFA/LAA Strut is now dead.

Only fairly deep pockets (initially) and real determination are likely to make a success of things there.
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Old 18th Aug 2008, 15:06
  #53 (permalink)  
 
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It is indeed sad that yet another flying club / group has 'closed up shop'.

Scotland in general, has a poor choice of 'airfields' for General Aviation type aircraft. In fact, I would say VERY LIMITED... Outwith the majors, there is barely a handful of alternatives - and the alternatives are not exactly cheap!

Compare the airfields in England, Ireland and Wales that are 'welcoming' to the GA community. Yes, there is probably more demand at these other locations (especially in England), but it doesnt mean that there is no demand here in Scotland.

The CAA (Campaign Against Aviation) dont help either, with fees for this and fees for that - fine, but at the prices they charge and some of the rules they impose, its a wonder there is any GA flying in the UK at all...

In the US, GA is encouraged, and promoted at all levels. Granted the weather is fairer, fuel is cheaper as is ACFT hire. Communities are even built around airfields with housing and hangarage located around the runways. Phoenix AZ, has a good few of these.

One really good but restricted 'airfield' is Kirknewton, just outside of Edinburgh by East Calder. Very limited in what you can and cant do there, but a welcoming atmosphere and good bunch of flyers.

Maybe a petition should be launched in favour of GA at bigger airfields. It brings in good money for the airfield, and assocoated companies.

YES, it sometimes 'gets in the way' of commercial aircraft but hey, thats life. We dont ban cyclists from the roads do we? We all enjoy flying and at different levels, so why should the GA community suffer...
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Old 18th Aug 2008, 20:00
  #54 (permalink)  
 
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GS
I can't believe you had a soft spot for G-BFJM.
DO.
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Old 18th Aug 2008, 21:53
  #55 (permalink)  
 
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I can't believe you had a soft spot for G-BFJM.
DO
Well they say you remember your first!

Looking back in my log book I also see G-BEWP and G-BFFY, was it so long ago?

Sorry to read about the passing of Peter Forbes too, fondly remebered trips in the Tiger.

GS
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Old 19th Aug 2008, 15:20
  #56 (permalink)  
 
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I too am sorry to hear of the club's demise. I started flying with Pegasus in 1983 and remember it fondly especially G-BFJM and my first solo (I seem to remember it was destroyed in an accident at Aboyne).Kevin Wigginton and Fiona Payton (nee Fraser) where are you now?GS
GS.

It was G-BEWP that was destroyed at Aboyne when it flipped onto its back It was still at Perth in use as an instructional airframe in 2006.
G-BFJM survived another few years ( and an encounter with telephone lines at Insch) before being written off in 1990.
G-BFFY, despite not being incident free over the years, still survives, as does G-TYGA, which I always enjoyed flying.
Kevin is alive and well, with BMI flying Airbuses out of Edinburgh, while I think that Fiona moved to the States with her Husband - whether she is still flying or not I'm not sure.
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Old 19th Aug 2008, 16:33
  #57 (permalink)  
 
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'JM was finally destroyed following the accident when the firemen set fire to it while disconnecting the battery.
DO.
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Old 19th Aug 2008, 19:26
  #58 (permalink)  
Sir George Cayley
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Funnily enough salvation may come from the grey suits in the grey Belgrano, HQ of the Campaign...

They came up with a consultation recently about allowing training from unlicensed strips; LAASI or something like that

If iit goes ahead then ABZ, INV etc will loose out.

You all wrote in support didn't you?

Sir George Cayley
 
Old 19th Aug 2008, 22:12
  #59 (permalink)  
 
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If, and I suspect it is still if, the powers that be decide to allow flying training at unlicensed airfields it can only be a good thing in my opinion. I am just finishing a 40 odd year career in ATC and have witnessed ga and training being pushed out of airfield after airfield as it becomes less and less practical to integrate these activities with busy commercial traffic. I have felt for a long time that basic training, say up to first solo, should be outside regulated airspace and non radio. The idea being to get airmanship back in the cockpit, ie fly the aircraft, look out of the window and develop situational awareness. Then progress to the mixed traffic, rt and ATC. I have a great deal of sympathy with the school of thought that believes ATC is a nuisance to most recreational flying. It's not ATC's fault it's the way we are regulated. An additional benefit of non licensed airfields is that they are cheaper to operate.
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Old 20th Aug 2008, 09:13
  #60 (permalink)  
 
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Hi,

pretty sure it was G-BFJM that was destroyed out west. I was working that day and drove out to the location, cant remember exactly where tho. The guy flying, JT still flying commercially.

Rgds.
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