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Showing posts from April, 2010

Cameron in 2010

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Over at Grays in Essex  this morning to ambush David Cameron, with a banner message: 'CAMERON2010@No10'.

There was a large reception committee in evidence in the playing field behind the school or college below, with TV outside broadcast vans with satellite dishes on their roofs, parked-up outside. On teh way back to the airfield I passed a very smart looking Agusta helicopter, en route to Grays,, I asusme to pick him up for his next appointment.

I've some photos in my camera and will try and put one up later, as I'm typing this between jobs at the airfield.

Next-up is the pop concert the afternoon at Camber Sands, with a rather different message and one that to be honest I don't understand: "WHEN HARD CREW RULED THE WORLD."

Now, if only someone would tell me what Gordon Brown's schedule is, I could have a special message flown for him too. Suggestions welcome!

No Dust Over Brighton

I've been up over Brighton this morning flying a banner over the inaugural marathon in the town. A glorious hazy day in warm sunshine and thousands of runners threading their way along the streets and the seafront. In fact I wouldn't envy any of them in this temperature, as I'm sure a number of runners are going to encounter heat stress given the sudden change in temperature.

On the way over there, I found I was the only pilot on the London information frequency which covers the entire south of England. It was a bizarre experience because normally there's a busy level of communications chatter on a weekend but early this morning, just an eerie silence.

By noon, the airwaves had 'warmed-up' as more light aircraft pilots took to the skies. Piston-engined aircraft which have filters installed as standard don't face the same level of risk from volcanic dust as jet-engined aircraft at high altitudes and so it seemed that everybody who could fly was taking a once…

Time to Spare - Go By Air

Last week, I had to go through the torment of my annual multi-engine renewal, which is rather like having to take your driving test each year but with the added bonus of the examiner turning-off one of the engines at a critical time in the flight. Of course, with the tragic events that took place in Russia yesterday, my thoughts are with the Polish people and this gets me thinking about what on earth might have happened, without trying to pre-judge the conclusions air accident investigation which will take place.

From what I can discover, 'Smolensk military' has no precision landing aids and was sufficiently blanketed in fog for an earlier transport aircraft attempting to land, to divert to Minsk. While Poland is in Europe and is an ICAO/EASA signatory, when it comes to our rigid civil air-safety standards, what we appear to have in this incident is a refurbished Presidential Tupolev which is rather less than 'State-of-the art' and an experienced Polish Air Force crew…