Wellesbourne Mountford (EGBW)

wellesbourneRAF Wellesbourne Mountford was the former base for number 22 Operational Training Unit and was equiped with Vickers Wellington bombers and Avro Anson trainers until the close of the war in 1945.

Pilots should be aware that Wellesbourne lies close to and underneath some busy Birmingham controlled airspace.

Wellesbourne Radio (AFIS) 124.025
Phone: 01789 842000
Website: www.wellesbourneairfield.com
Distance from Welshpool: 62nm

Caernarfon (EGCK)

caernarfonCaernarfon airport was once-upon-a-time known as RAF Llandwrog and a training base for bomber crews.  The Air Observers School there also flew Avro Anson and Westland Lysander aircraft.

Its exquisite position at the shoulder of the Lleyn Peninsula makes it a magnet for flyers.  The sea on one side, Yr Eifl on the other and the whole of Snowdonia behind you.  Oh, and Anglesey is just a hop across the Menai Straits.

Two runways, cafe/bistro, refuelling, aviation museum and the seaside right off the end of the runway.  Fill up at Welshpool (it’s cheaper here) and off you go.

Caernarfon Radio (A/G) 122.25
Phone: 01286 830800
Website: www.caernarfonairport.co.uk/
Distance from Welshpool: 52nm

Shobdon (EGBS)

shobdonErstwhile base for RAF No.1 Glider Training School preparing glider pilots for Normandy and Arnhem landings.  Today a thriving rural airfield and always lots going on with visitors and spectators encouraged.
Flying schools, camp site, bar lounge and a cafe of no little renown. Shobdon is just a wee hop over the Shropshire hills for us Welshpool flyers.

Shobdon Information (AFIS & A/G) 123.50
Phone: 01568 708369
Website: http://herefordshireaeroclub.com/
Distance from Welshpool: 25nm

Sleap (EGCV)

sleapSleap aerodrome, 10nm north of Shrewsbury is our nearest neighbour airfield-wise. Former WW2 base for Whitley Bombers, Horsa Glider training and then Wellington Bombers.  Still used by the RAF as an overspill for its Squirrel Helicopter training based at Shawbury.  Therefore some care required when flying in, and as you should everywhere, observe the local rules.

Two runways, control tower cafe and a small aviation museum.

Sleap A/G 122.450
Phone: 01939 232882
Website: http://www.shropshireaeroclub.co.uk
Distance from Welshpool: 18nm

Dusk visitors

With the new year we are pleased to see the evening sun staying out a little longer each night - the only disadvantage is there will be a few less of these beautiful dusk photos from Brian Nicholas.

  • G-WINV, Eurocopter EC155 B1.
  • G-ODSA, Bell 429 (Jet Ranger on steroids), the first VIP for the UK register and only the third in the UK.
  • Cessna catching the last of the day's sun.
  • Our cherished air ambulance returning home.
  • Departing aircraft on our apron.

Lockheed Martin Super Hercules

One of the benefits of having our own airspace is that passing aircraft will let you know in advance that they are passing through and, when asked, are often willing to do a brief fly through. That was the case with this Hercules, which graced us with its presence.

Photography – Brian Nicholas

Winter warmers

Winter may be setting in but the briefest moments of sunshine are enough to send aviators into the sky - and we are pleased to say that it has also set off the shutter on Brian Nicholas's camera:

  • G-WPDD - Eurocopter EC135 P1, checking electric cabling in the area. Although it might seem an extensive way of doing things, the location of the power lines and the advanced equipment on this EC135, make it the most efficient way to check that cables are in good condition.
  • G-BTOE - Brian was a big fan of this Cessna C-165. "A gem, A classic a beautiful aircraft, that's this...four seat cruiser. The last version and most powerful of the Airmaster series in this case a 165 horsepower Warner radial engine. Designed by Dwane Wallace."
  • G-RODC - Steen Skybolt
  • Vans RV-7
  • Piper PA28 Cherokee Warrior
  • Robin R3000

Photography by Brian Nicholas

Puff the magic dragon

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Thanks to Peter Greenrod who spotted a Welsh Dragon in the skies. Just like the bat-signal is was proudly displaying itself above the airport to welcome visiting aircraft. If only we could find a way to make it stay…

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