Date: 24/10/2008

Time: 11:50 - 13:15

Aircraft: Ikarus C42 - G-CDMS


I'm going to Sywell or Northampton Airport today, with a new flying partner Colin Aldous. As there are two of us, we can book up two slots each giving us 6 hours, so can go further afield.

When I get to the airfield, Colin has just got the plane out and we fuel and inspect it. We have both planned the route and they only differ slightly. Colin very kindly lets me fly the outbound leg.

Take off on 26 and head up north past Brimpton, then passing (and missing) Whittles on the way towards Booker (Wycombe Air Park). Then almost due north past Alyesbury and Milton Keynes, then deviate towards Sywell, that sits between Northampton and Wellingborough. Finally we see the lakes by the river that marks the final waypoint. Join and landing go OK. It's quite a large open airfield and we make our way to the visitor parking area on some tarmac. Eventually find the right place to book-in which isn't by the big C sign on the control tower.

I have been to Sywell once before by road and stayed at the Art-Deco style hotel, which was really nice, so we have some refreshments here. The terminal building has an aircraft style structure on its observation deck and inside, all the fixtures, fittings and in fact everything has an aviation theme. I think they have made a really nice job of it.

Sywell is the home of the Barclays Blades display team. They are all lined up near to our plane and they are being filmed for an episode of The Apprentice (you know - the one with Alan Sugar or as we call him, Mrs Tiggywinkle without the bonnet). We are treated to some displays over the airfield whilst they are filming, whilst we have lunch. I wonder if we can get a glimpse of our plane when it is televised?

We go and have a look at the museum, but it is closed and there isn't a lot to see from the outside.

Soon enough it is time to go back to Popham, so a quick checkover and we are on our way, with Colin in the left seat. I think this is only the third time I have been in the right seat and it seems a bit weird. A nice view of the climbout over the airfield. Poor Colin, the air seems to have become a lot more lively and bumpy since this morning. I have a quick go at flying from the right seat using my left hand - it's actually quite difficult. If I ever get round to doing the conversion to the Eurostar aircraft, I will have to learn to fly left-handed as it is normal for that plane.

An uneventful journey home, following mostly the same route taken getting here.

I enjoyed today's flight have been further afield than before. And its a lot more sociable having someone to fly with, and to talk to enroute.


VIDEO of climbout from Sywell and approach to Popham

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