The long awaited return to dual flying begins
May I just first start that here at RAF Cranwell Gliding Club, we join others in respect to mourn the passing of HRH Prince Phillip. His leadership was an inspiration for us all. Operations were ceased on Saturday 17th April so we could pay our respects during HRH’s funeral.
With the weather on Friday looking promising, operations were approved to proceed, with 18 flights from a quiet North airfield taking to the orange skies above RAF Cranwell. Service members came out and all were flown as dual flying could now resume – not bad at all for a short evening of gliding!
Sunday came through with an incredibly promising forecast, a very rare occurrence in the Lincolnshire countryside. And it did not disappoint. Multiple members regained solo currency, visitors were flown, new members signed up, as well as took advantage of the Go Solo scheme (you can find more about that here). Duty pilot Katie had to play a very fine game of balancing how long people could stay up in gliders and how many had to be flown. At the end of the day, a total of 61 launches were completed, with everyone who attended the airfield flown. An incredible achievement for such a packed day!
We ended the weekend with 79 total flights, a visit from a Grob 109 and plenty of happy visitors and solo pilots. Our Turbo-Falke is still awaiting its prop back from Germany, but once it has returned, we shall be able to resume aerotowing from Cranwell.
A thank you again to the volunteers on the ground, especially the duty instructor and duty pilot on Sunday, who handled a very tricky day’s flying incredibly well!