Learning to fly can be one of the most rewarding of challenges, whether you’re 16 or 60. Students will always remember their first solo flight and their final flight test for the rest of their lives.
Flight and safety requirements
- Minimum age 14 years.
- Maximum weight 16 stone
- Participants should be between 4’6” and 6’4’’ and be agile enough to get in and out of the aircraft.
- No previous flying experience is required.
- Participants should seek medical advice if they have previously suffered a heart condition or other medical complaint such as back or neck problems,epilepsy,giddiness,high blood pressure, or vertigo.
- Flight training is not advisable for pregnant mothers.
- All flights are at the instructor’s discretion and participants should advice their instructor prior to their first flight of any conditions that may affect flight safety.
- No refunds will be given if the participant is unable to complete the flight due to non disclosure of any of the above.
- Please note we operate a zero alcohol policy.
Before your first solo, you will need a doctors medical certificate. This is not a full medical and is based around the HGV medical requirements.
In a year of good British weather progress can be made quickly but when a spell of bad weather comes along delays are inevitable. If you can train whenever the weather is suitable, including summer evenings, progress is generally better than if you are only able to train at weekends.
The National Private Pilot’s Licence (NPPL M) microlight rating requires a minimum of 25 hours flying training, 10 hours of which must be solo, for the pilot to have no operational restrictions. A licence with restrictions can be achieved with a minimum of 15 hours flying training, including 7 hours solo. These restrictions include not being able to carry passengers, only being able to fly in very good weather conditions, and being restricted to flying within 8nm of your own airfield.
- Aircraft familiarisation
- Preparation for flight and action after
- Air Experience
- Effects of Controls
- Straight & Level flight
- Medium Level-turns (up to 30° bank angle)
- Climbing and descending turns
- Slow flight
- Spin Awareness
- Takeoff and climb to down wind
- The circuit, approach, and landing/overshoot
- Advanced turning (up to 60° bank angle)
- Unusual and dangerous attitudes/conditions
- Forced landings, with/without power
- Operation at minimum level
- First solo
- Solo circuit, local area, and general flying consolidation to GST for microlight NPPL
- Dual revision for GST Pilot navigation
In addition to flying training student pilots must also learn and pass exams on a number of ground school subjects. we recommend a combination of attending lessons and private study to achieve the best results. Even if you are not particularly confident of your academic ability you should not be put off by the exams – all ground school subjects relate to what goes on in the air while flying and they are much easier to understand when put into this context.
- There are five exams covering the following subjects:
- Principles of Flight
- Aviation Law: this ensures that the pilot understands how the law applies to him or her, including when and where they can and cannot fly, what documents they must have in their possession, what rules they must obey and how they must ensure that both they and their aircraft are capable and safe for the flights they wish to make
- Aviation Navigation: ground training provides the pilot with the necessary skills and knowledge to plan before a flight and then fly to that plan, knowing at all times where they are and how to get where they want to go. The more navigation is included in flight planning on the ground, the easier it is to navigate once in the air.
- Aviation Meteorology: these lessons give a sufficient understanding of the weather and how it affects the performance and safety of the aircraft, for the pilot to know when it is safe to fly and when it is not. This includes being able to anticipate and plan for changes to the weather during a flight, especially if it is a long cross-country or touring flight
- Airframes & Engines: these exams ensure that the student pilot understands how the aircraft flies and how its engine and control systems work. They also cover aircraft performance and the many factors that can affect it in the air and when taking off and landing.
- Aircraft Instruments
- Fire, First Aid, & Safety Equipment
- Human Performance Limitations: this subject covers all the different factors that can affect the way a pilot performs in flight. These range from the effects of tiredness, alcohol, drugs, lack of oxygen and cold, to misperceptions and misjudgments caused from stress, anxiety, complacency or confusion. The knowledge acquired in studying this subject allows the pilot to factor in his or her own performance, and importantly its limitations, into their risk assessments before flying.
The exams must be passed before the pilot can achieve a license even if the General Flying Test of skills has already been passed. Most ground school exams use the multiple-choice system; each question has a range of answers from which the student must select the correct one. The navigation exam involves planning an imaginary flight using a chart and navigation ‘tools’, taking into account wind speed and other weather conditions given in the exam scenario.
When budgeting for flying training , it is wise to calculate the cost of the minimum number of hours required and then add between 50 and 100% of that cost, depending on how confident you feel of your own ability. Hourly rates start at £135.00 per hour and include a pre and post flight briefing and one hour flying instruction. Realistically, a budget of £3,500 – £4,500 should cover your flying training. On top of this you should should allow £150.00 to cover the five exams, retakes are charged at £30.00 each. For a full ground school package allow £1,000-£1,500 – this will give you ground schooling in all subjects plus the five exams.