Whether you are just beginning, wish to extend your knowledge, get an advanced rating or get back into the air after an extended absence from flying we will be only too happy to help you.
The Cotswold Aero Club offers one-to-one personalised training to the highest levels and is not a 'pilot sausage machine'. Our instructors are motivated to teach, and are not young pilots building up hours prior to joining airlines. Every one of us has our own special way of learning. Our instructors have the sensitivity to respond to them and will tailor make your course to suit you.
We also train those who have disablements. Phil Mathews, our chief flying instructor is one of the most experienced and unflappable in the business, and will always find the time to discuss any special problems you may have.
Those who are wishing to get a JAA private pilot's licence must expect to do a minimum of forty five hours training in the air. It sometimes can take a little longer, especially as we get a bit older! You can start learning to fly when you are under sixteen but need to be sixteen to fly solo. You cannot hold a pilot's licence until you are seventeen.
A UK National PPL is also available with slightly reduced training requirements.
You can learn to fly even in later years of life and many folks take up the sport after retirement.
You will have to pass a simple medical test by a qualified doctor. We can direct you to the an appropriate doctor near you. Some medical problems may prevent you from ever flying solo, such as diabetes or heart conditions. It is still possible to qualify but you will always have to fly alongside a qualified pilot (called a safety pilot) in case you are taken ill. This is not half as serious as it sounds, as it is always more fun to share your flying experiences with others.
Apart from the time in the air, you will also have to pass a number of examinations which you can take at our club. You will need to make a commitment to study, but the task will not be beyond you. Our instructors will give you all the ground school training that you need and will always be able to help you with any special problems.
Most people take up to a year to obtain their licence but some have undertaken intensive training and passed within a few weeks. There are excellent B&Bs and hotels nearby should you wish to spend more than one day flying with us.
Learning to fly is a big commitment but the benefits are enormous. You will be able to say, "Its a lovely day, let's fly to the Channel Islands for Lunch". You will have become one of the special few who have the gift of flight.
The basic pilot licence, the PPL, will entitle you to fly with passengers in most small aircraft; even abroad. You will be entitled able to hire aircraft to fly in other European countries too. There is a shorter course leading to a National Pilot Licence which will not entitle you to fly abroad.
With either of these licenses you will not be able to fly more advanced aircraft such as those with retractable undercarriages or aircraft with more than one engine. You will also not be allowed to fly in cloud or at night.
Many graduates undertake further training to extend their flying experiences.
- Flying more complex aircraft, aircraft fitted with tail wheels, aircraft with twin engines, night flying, flying in cloud on instruments, commercial pilot licenses and for the more adventurous, aerobatics.
- A few members have even learnt to fly at our club using their own planes!
- Most members will continue to fly after qualification by renting one of our excellent fleet of aircraft. Some buy shares which may become available in an aircraft while others buy their own or in same cases even build it!