Q. How many aircraft do you have?
A. We have five aircraft on the fleet with four different types to suit different people’s needs. With the exception of our C172 we have two of each aircraft so availability is never usually a problem.
Q. What age can I start taking lessons?
A. The minimum age to count lessons towards the issue of a PPL is 14, the student must be 16 before they can fly solo and 17 before a licence can be issued. There is no minimum age for a trial lesson.
Q. How long will it take me to get a PPL?
A. Again this depends on different things, mainly how quickly the student progresses, continuity of lessons and of course the weather! We find the average time to complete the course is 12 – 18 months.
Q. How much does it cost to gain a PPL?
A.From the start we like to be honest with our students by explaining that it can take longer than 45 hours to gain a PPL. Everybody is different; some people progress quicker than others and it can depend on things such as the students’ age and ability, continuity of lessons and previous flying experience. Over the years we have found the average cost to gain a PPL is between £8000 - £10,000.
Q. How do I go about paying for lessons, should I pay the whole amount upfront?
A.The preferred method of payment for most of our students is the ‘pay as you fly’ method. This is where you take your lesson and then pay for what you did at the end to the nearest 5 minutes. In the current financial climate it is not advisable to pay for the whole course upfront with some flying schools as this can be risky, however a few of our students do prefer to pay this way and we offer a small discount to those who do.
Q. Why should I learn to fly at Barton instead of one of the larger airports in the region?
A. Here at Barton we benefit from open airspace and no lengthy delays due to commercial traffic. Barton has several short grass runways which can benefit the student. The added challenge of flying from Barton means the students here are taught to a higher standard and this will stick with them throughout their flying career.
Q. Grass runways, what if it rains?
A. The airfield operators have installed new drainage over the past few years which has worked well and significantly minimised the number of airfield closures due to waterlogging.
Q. Will I always have the same instructor?
A. Yes, we have found that the best way to learn is to fly with the same instructor throughout the course. Continuity of lessons is very important in ensuring that the student finishes in the minimum number of hours.
Q. How experienced are your instructors?
A. The combined total of our instructors experience is over 45,000 hours, some have been instructing here for over 20 years! Each one has had to gain sufficient experience and pass strict examinations to become a flying instructor.
Q. How does the weather affect my lessons?
A. To start with fairly good weather is needed, however once the student becomes more experienced it is not as critical.
Q. Where do I sit the written exams?
A. We have two in house examiners so all exams are sat here at the flying school.
Q. Can I fly even if I wear glasses?
A. Yes, lots of commercial pilots wear glasses. Provided you can pass a medical exam with an Aeromedical Examiner (AME) you can fly solo. There are several in the region and details are available here.
If you have any further questions about learning to fly please contact the office on 0161 787 7326 or email.