I was contacted by some folks from Wakatipu Aero Club, down there in New Zealand, saying that they’d like to appear on the Podcast. One of their instructors is a chap called Alex Turnbull. He is originally from Morpeth in the North East of the UK and has travelled all the way to the other side of the world to pursue his dream of flying GA in a really interesting and challenging environment.
Quite by coincidence I recently put Google Analytics on to this web site and, after a month, it turns out that the Podcast has been listened to in 48 countries around the world. I couldn’t believe that people in China, or places like Indonesia and Russia actually download and listen to the Podcast but I guess that’s the power of podcasting and the internet and I shouldn’t be surprised to be contacted by aviators in New Zealand.
As promised, here’s the second episode from my visit, earlier this year, to RAF Coningsby and the Typhoon Display Team. I wanted to see inside the cockpit of the Typhoon and Flying Officer Gregor Ogston was kind enough to spend half an hour or so, explaining what all of the knobs, buttons and dials do. Gregor also explains what the ejection sequence is, which is fascinating to listen to. Following the look inside the aircraft Liam Whelan, the display engineer manager, and Gregor took me round the outside of the aircraft.
If you are REALLY interested in fast jets, and the Typhoon in particular, then this is the episode for you.
Today I’m visiting Sherburn Airfield in Yorkshire to meet a fellow pilot, Brian Cattle. Brian is a very keen aviator and has been flying privately for quite a few years now. Dedicated and passionate flyers are always welcome on the podcast so I’m glad to say Brian’s agreed to come on the podcast to share the experiences of his flight training from PPL to CPL and on to Flying Instructor.
Today I’m talking to Rob Hart from Sky Demon.
Sky Demon started out by developing VFR flight planning software and have since brought out their own aviation GPS unit.
The flight planning software first caught my eye due to the quality of their charts which, I’m told, are built using adaptive vectors. That means that the detail on the map is always extremely clear no matter what level of zoom you are using.
The main driver behind the product’s development is to present all relevant data to the pilot in as clear a way as possible and this they have accomplished well. Even NOTAM and weather briefing information is presented both in text form and graphically on the charts in a simple straightforward fashion.
During my visit to the Flying Show recently I caught up with an organisation I’ve been wanting to base an episode on for quite a while. A listener, Michael Womersley-Carter, had brought Sky Watch Civil Air Patrol to my attention some time back so I was keen to interview them at the NEC.
Tony Cowan MBE is Chairman of Sky Watch and kindly agreed to spare half an hour to chat about the organisation and about his own personal aviation story.
Just recently I was at the NEC in Birmingham for the Flying Show so I took the opportunity to have a chat with various people down there. First up was Steve Bridgewater, Commercial Director at Air Atlantique’s Classic Flight.
Classic Flight do a superb job of keeping some classic old British Aircraft in airworthy condition. They have recently opened `Airbase’ at Coventry Airport. Airbase is not a museum in the conventional sense but more a working hangar that allows visitors to go and have a look around. They actually call themselves a ‘safari park for classic aeroplanes’.
In addition they also offer pleasure flights in several of their aircraft.
It sounded like an interesting story, so for episode 34 of Flying Podcast I firstly asked Steve to explain the history of Classic Flight.
I’ve been asked by a listener called Tom Boothby whether I could do an episode on flight training in the US. I’ve eventually got a few folks lined up to come on the podcast and chat about their experiences.
So, Episode 33 of Flying Podcast features a fellow Barton flyer called Dave Crozier who trained in the US some time back. My first question for Dave was `what was your experience of flight training in the USA?’ His response was that he’d been struggling to get his PPL completed over here in the UK. The weather in England was conspiring to prevent him getting his flying licence so he decided to go over to the US to complete his training.
After a great deal of research, Dave chose UK Flight Training of Long Beach in California. He chose California due to the predicted better weather and with 360 flying days a year who could argue.
Episode 32 of Flying Podcast sees me back up to York to interview Peter Davies. Peter is an instructor on gyrocopters for the Gyrocopter Experience. He currently runs their Preston franchise. Quite by chance, when I was reading about gyrocopters I came across Peter’s name and I was fascinated to read about his experiences in the world of aviation. His flying pedigree goes way back to the early days of hang gliding and microlighting here in the UK and so I thought he’d make a good candidate to appear on the podcast.
For episode 31 of Flying Podcast I’m talking Martin Hatton. Martin spends much of his time training flying instructors for Ravenair, based at Liverpool Airport and City Airport, Manchester. I was interested to find out what it takes to become a flying instructor and what is involved in getting a flying instructor rating.
My first question was `Why do people become flying instructors?’.
Martin replied that it’s mainly to build hours for a commercial career but there are people who actually have other jobs and wish to instruct in their spare time, or, like Martin, they just want to be a flying instructor. There is the added advantage that you get to fly for free and get paid for it.
Today’s podcast interviewee is Craig Richardson. Craig actually wrote in and suggested the subject for this podcast. He’s at the point in his flying career where he’s about to launch into training for the ATPL and he’s trying to decide where to do his ATPL groundschool studies and the CPL/IR flight training. He thought that the decision making process that he’s going through would make for an interesting podcast.
Craig has done a great deal of research: on-line via aviation forums, by visiting flight training exhibitions and by talking to the training suppliers themselves.
Today we discuss which training providers made it on to Craig’s short-list, get an idea for which companies he’s thinking of going with and, of course, why he chose them.