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In Northern Ireland and the UK all aviation is controlled by the CAA, and in particular Paragliding, Hang Gliding including motorised form is delegated to the BHPA (British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association) The national body. The BHPA will license and accredit only good schools who run courses to their syllabus and procedures. All training, teaching methods, examination and regulation of Instructors are governed by the BHPA under the local guidance of the Chief Flying Instructor of the school.

 

The only way to learn to fly under correct supervision with the necessary insurance cover is with one of the BHPA member clubs and that is ourselves - AEROSPORTS. You will be taught all the essentials that you need to know - air movement, meteorology, airlaw, safety rules, aerodynamics etc. initial stages the emphasis will be on practical training to enable the student to achieve flight and improve practical skills but some basic flight theory will be necessary.

All training is in accordance with the BHPA Paragliding Training Program and all students are encouraged to achieve a recognized pilot rating qualification such as Elementary Pilot, Club Pilot etc. Additional training, flight theory and a multiple-choice exam will be required if you decide to continue towards a pilot rating qualification. 

 

 Ken McConnell

 

All flights are under the direct supervision of Ken McConnell the chief flying instructor. Ken is currently the most experienced paraglider pilot in Northern Ireland. He has accumulated almost 5000 flying hours over the last 25 years, flying in many other countries such as USA, Spain, France, Austria, Israel, Cyprus and Turkey. He is also a BHPA qualified tandem pilot, Paramotor pilot, Microlight pilot, and Private Pilot Aeroplanes PPL-A.

 

Total current flying hours: Hang gliding 2200, Paragliding 1240, Paramotoring 500,Microlights 150, Light Aircraft 800 (and counting)

 

He will be quick to assess your individual needs.

 

Pilot Profile

         Flying 145 miles in 7 hours up to 18500 ft (3.5 miles high) on a Hang Glider from Owens Valley California to Lunning Nevada in 1987.

         Winning the Red Bull Ulster open 1998.

         Winning the Escape International Pilot Trophy Piedrahita Spain (paragliding)

         Private Pilot (Rutan Vari-eze)

 

 

 

         Chief Flying Instructor

 

Ken McConnell

Tel: 02893 341414

Mob: 07879 632111

ken@aerosports.co.uk

 

 Courses

  

 

 

 

Paragliding

 

 

 

1st day taster: 

130

 

 

Single days tuition:

100 (1st day 130)

 

 

Elementary Pilot Course (4 days):

390

 

 

Club Pilot Course (5 days): 

390

 

 

EP & CP Package:

780

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please Note: 1 day defined as 6 to 8 hrs of instruction.

 

BHPA Membership Requirements

Before Training can start all students must have BHPA membership (inclusive of 3rd party Insurance). This can be arranged through the school on the day of training. Costs.- 10.00 for 24 hrs, 45.00* for 3 months, & 77.00* for Annual training membership, (note this payment is made directly to the BHPA British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association), the association will send a copy of Training Wings plus monthly magazines to provide the new student with the necessary information required at the initial stage.

 

*Instructional Insurance Capitation Fee (IICF) 15 applies (First time student insurance supplement).

 

Training Instruction at Magilligan, County Londonderry - a perfect takeoff into smooth air!

 

Student Attire

Boots with ankle support are necessary and old practical clothing is a good idea as it may get dirty. Any students wearing shorts and tee shirts can not be trained due to the lack of protection these provide.

 

Toilets

There are none on the hills!

 

Lunch

Bring your own lunch and lots of refreshing drinks! (strictly no alcoholic drinks)

 

 

 Flying Sites

 

Flying Sites are controlled by the local club UHPC (Ulster Hang Gliding and Paragliding Club) who have permission from the land owner for flying activities and the club also maintains a sites guide of rules for each site for all club members. There are four main areas for Paragliding in the province - THE NORTH COAST (MAGILLIGAN), THE WEST (DUNGIVEN GLENSHANE PASS), THE EAST (LARNE HILLS) and THE SOUTH (MOURNES). Venues are determined due to weather conditions.


In addition basic training sites are located approx. 20 mins drive north of Belfast and are fairly central to most areas in the province. Initial training starts on low gentle nursery slopes without hazards to enable safe and rapid progress.
The student having mastered the basics can progress to higher and steeper slopes with direct instructional supervision at all times. It is an advantage to be fairly fit during the initial stages of training.

 

 Tandem Flights

 

Aerosports is the only BHPA tandem qualified school in N.I., using the very latest high performance dual canopies to enable the newcomer to soar on the very first day thus getting a hands on feel of controlling the glider right from the start.

 

General tandem flights are available throughout the province from small hills such as Shanes Hill up to our highest mountain Slieve Donard.

The normal charge for approx a 20 to 30 min flight is 40.00, however dual flights may be included with daily training at no extra charge provided conditions are suitable and the student desires a tandem flight to complement training.
Boots with ankle support are necessary, and old practical clothing that may get dirty is a good idea however a flying suit can be provided, and thin gloves are a good idea to protect and keep the hands warm.

Tandem flight at Magilligan, County Londonderry - 6 mile ridge from the Mussenden Temple to Binevenagh

 

 Training Abroad

 

Usually only Club Pilots and above will receive advanced training in a foreign land from Aerosports. Usually, French Alps, Spain Piedrahita, or Turkey Olu-Deniz. But less experienced pilots may be considered provided their flying is deemed competent by the C.F.I.