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NWHGPC: North Wales Hang gliding and Paragliding Club

About

We are a group of hang glider and paraglider pilots who fly mainly in North Wales. Our BHPA affiliated club liaises with local landowners in N and NE Wales to provide flying sites where members can do foot launched, un-powered flying. We also have a site in England (Thurstaston) and the Club was founded across the other side of the Wirral peninsula in the early '70's. Our club is comprised of the newly qualified right through to pilots with decades of experience and everything in between. A warm welcome is extended to all newcomers.

Learning to fly

Once you have slipped the surly bonds of earth and experienced the pure pleasure of free-flight you will wonder how you never discovered the joy of soaring before. Although NWHGPC does not offer ab-initio training, if intending to enter the sport it is vital you train with a BHPA (British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association) registered school. Most schools offer taster days and even tandem flights to get a feel for our sport. Have a look at the list of BHPA registered schools. Our local BHPA Registered School is YX Paragliding.

Members

Most of our members live in Merseyside, Cheshire, Flintshire, Denbighshire and Gwynedd, with the odd straggler from as far away as Southern England (no big hills down there apparently). Our present membership strength is just over 100 (membership costs £15 per year). News items pertaining to the club are posted on the website and members stay in contact through the club forum although periodic newsletters are published.

Meetings

We traditionally meet at 7.30pm onwards on the last Monday of each month (Bank Holidays excluded), however with the loss of the British Aerospace Sports and Social Club a new venue is being sought to re-convene post Covid restrictions.

Coaching

Our coaching team is ably led by Brian Dillon (PG) and Steve Hogan (HG). Our coaches are here to assist with all advice and aspects of pilot development, be it induction to the club for the newly qualified, mentoring through the Pilot Development syllabus, site briefings, equipment or just a general chat about any query to do with flying. Do not hesitate to contact a club coach - details are in Club Contacts.

Latest News

Site Status 20/10/20

All NWHGPC sites are currently OPEN however responsibility resides with the individual to ascertain whether travel to and from any site is within the local or national Covid restrictions applicable to their place of residence or domicility. (mw20/10/20)

Parking fee at Gyrn Moelfre 09/09/20

The landowners at Gyrn Moelfre have asked that drivers of all vehicles parked on the site pay a £5 fee. The owners spend considerable time and expense each year maintaining the access track to launch and other aspects of the site for our benefit. This fee applies to members of all clubs including MTB's, however students with YX Paragiding school should contact the school to ascertain arrangements. Please leave the fee in an envelope in the collection box before the first gate with vehicle registration and club marked on it. (mw20/10/20)

New Civil Aviation Notification Procedures (CANP) 23/08/20

An online system for CANP has been introduced. Notification to the Low Flying booking Cell (LFBC) can now take place through the new CANP app or via the weblink CANP

The LFBC have asked that if possible at least 4 hours notice is given for site activation (all NWHGPC sites are now embedded in their database) and as previously this is a weekday only service. Electronic notification to the LFBC will generate a NOTAM (coded as parachute dropping) with a 2nm radius. A Contact telephone number (but not name) will be displayed on the NOTAM.

The LFBC still accepts notification by telephone (0800 515544) or email swk-lfoflfbc@mod.gov.uk in which case email is preferred. (mw20/10/20)

Hawarden RMZ and procedures for Moel Accre and Moel Famau. 03/16/17(rev)

Background

Due to increased traffic levels WEF 30/03/2017 a RMZ (Radio mandatory Zone) has been established around Hawarden Airport (EGNR). None of our sites are contained within the RMZ however the western extent comes within a few kilometres of Moel Accre and Moel Famau hence any XC flights downwind will quickly enter it. As part of the consultation process the club has negotiated a Letter of Agreement (LoA) with Hawarden ATC for our activities to penetrate the RMZ provided prior notification is given. The procedure for this is detailed below and also in the relevant site guide. The full LoA is posted on the website for reference.

Procedures

The following procedures are paraphrased from the LoA. The 2 NWHGPC sites where operations may result in penetration of the RMZ are Llandegla (Moel Accre)* and Moel Famau. These sites are daylight only. All operational periods of the sites which may result in entry to the RMZ will be notified to Hawdarden ATC with 30mins notice of any planned acticity. To notify ATC telephone on 01244 522012 or text 'Llandegla/Moel Famau active (dd/mm/yyyy) from (local time)' to 07786 208291. An acknowledgement must be received from Harwarden ATC prior to commencement of activities. NWHGPC will not normally confirm cessation of activities, Hawarden will record the site and potential downwind routings as being active until night. The first pilot to notify Hawarden please post this fact on the website forum or ensure the information is passed on by some means.

Notes

*Llandegla is a Visual Reporting Point for Hawarden traffic hence is used instead of Moel Accre. On receipt of notification, Hawarden will broadcast our activities on the ATIS (Automatic Information Service) and traffic my elect to avoid the RMZ on that account. Consider notifying Hawarden of any flying activity from Moel Accre or Famau. Notification to Hawarden does not constitute clearance to penetrate the ATZ. (gh30/03/17revMW21/10/20)

Upcoming Events

Events in the NWHGPC Google calendar:

Club Contacts

Office Name Phone no Mobile no E-mail
Chairman Mark Warren 07979 513205 chairman@nwhgpc.org.uk
Coaches
(paragliding)
Brian Dillon 0151 648 1646 07748 968771 pgcoach@nwhgpc.org.uk
Clive Mills 07785 512222 clivekmills@hotmail.com
Ian Home 01978 761235 07718 692639 secretary@nwhgpc.org.uk
Coach (HG) Steve Hogan 0151 6384072 07973 469013 hgcoach@nwhgpc.org.uk
Competitions Bob Little (HG) 0151 652 0880 07968 221345  
Vacant (PG)
Safety officer Brian Dillon 0151 648 1646 07748 968771 safety@nwhgpc.org.uk
Secretary / membership Ian Home 01978 761235 07718 692639 secretary@nwhgpc.org.uk
Sites officer Stephen Taylor 01978 758355 07787132489 sites@nwhgpc.org.uk
Social secretary Vacancy
Training officer Steve Hogan 0151 648 1306 07973 469013 -
Treasurer Fin O'Leary treasurer@nwhgpc.org.uk
Webmaster Tim Salter 01352 740754 07713 113460 webmaster@nwhgpc.org.uk

Flying Sites

Flying at the south of the Clwydian Range is now affected by the new Hawarden RMZ. Please see the Letter of Agreement we have negotiated which eases the restrictions that we are subject to.

NWHGPC now has an open access policy to its flying sites where visitors are current BHPA registered pilots qualified to CP and above and there are no extra restrictions imposed by landowners.

Before Going to North Wales Sites

RAF Valley in Anglesey is home of the RAF fast jet training school and North Wales is a training zone for low level flight. Aircraft frequently fly below hilltop height. If you propose to fly any of the Club Sites mid-week, you are strongly advised to inform the Civil Aviation Authority via the CANP system. All the NWHGPC sites are in the new electronic database.

Notify via the CANP app or alternatively the CANP weblink canp.logans.me.uk . If you wish to notify LFBC by email at swk-lfoflfbc@mod.gov.uk or by telephone the Freephone NOTAM line: 0800 515544. Give them site position (full grid reference as in the 'At a glance' data box for the site) and stress the importance of passing the information on to RAF Valley. Email is preferred over telephone.

Visitors

Please contact one of the club officers if you are a visiting pilot. A small onsite fee may be payable where the NWHGPC has to pay for site usage. This fee effectively gives temporary NWHGPC membership. You may be asked for this fee by an NWHGPC member who will request your name and address and ask to see your current BHPA membership card.

Site Behaviour

A lot of hard work has gone into negotiating our sites, so please follow our instructions to the letter. Some Club Sites have restrictions imposed by the landowner, so read the accompanying notes carefully.

Observe the Country Code. Although many of our sites may look isolated and deserted, this is a closely-knit community and people will be watching you even if you cannot see them. So be extra careful, do not climb walls or fences even if it means a longer walk. Use the gates, and be sure to close them after use, even if you are coming back in five minutes - this is more than enough time for livestock to get out. As a general rule, please do not bring dogs onto our sites: but if you do, please keep them on a lead. Take your litter home with you.

Of course, there are many hills and mountains in North Wales that do not feature in our Site Guide. Should you decide to have a go at flying any of them, at least make sure you have the prior approval of the landowner concerned.

Inconsiderate use and parking of vehicles causes a lot of trouble at our sites. The following rules regarding them must be observed:

Directions to Club Sites

The OS Map Number and Grid Reference for each Club Site is the first item given in the 'At a glance' site data box on the pages for each site. We leave it to you to navigate your way to the parking area for your chosen site. In all cases, a better idea of each site (and its approaches) can be obtained by study of the appropriate OS map, which if reading this guide via the Club Website, can opened from the links given in the ‘Quick Reference’ section of this guide.

Soaring - the Rules of the Ridge

Naturally, there are going to be times when the air is crowded with other flyers, we therefore expect every flyer to be familiar with the flying rules issued by the BHPA.

Medical Aid

Should an accident occur, the nearest hospitals that have casualty units open every day can be found at LLANDUDNO, BANGOR, BODELWYDDAN, CHESTER, WREXHAM and SHREWSBURY. If an injury is serious, call an ambulance rather than go looking for a hospital. IN AN EMERGENCY, DIAL 999

And Finally... We wish you safe and happy flying in North Wales. Please co-operate with us, and 'We'll keep a welcome on the hillside'.

Go to the sites guide

Weather + Useful Links

Club Forum and Newsletters

Today we do most communication via the club forum, but here are some historic newsletters:

Gallery