August has been an exceptionally busy month with work, which is just as well considering the amount of helicopter flying I need to pay for! My licence FINALLY arrived from the CAA earlier this month, and I lost no time in booking in and passing my R44 type rating skills test.
My first flight as a fully licensed R44 pilot was a really fun trip with the Heli Air gang to Le Touquet, so straight in at the deep end (not literally, luckily, especially as we did the Channel crossings way lower than I’ve done in planes in the past!). I’ll have to write up the trip in a separate post to do it justice, but here are a couple of photos to give you a flavour. This was taken flying along the south coast past Brighton, following the helicopter in front.
All three helicopters parked up at Le Touquet.
Safely back home and luggage unloaded!
Moving on to some more heli flying photos from this month, this was taken at Old Warden, where the amazing Shuttleworth Collection is housed (I’ve written about it before, here) and where I managed one of my best landings yet. It’s very worth a visit whether by air or road, though of course their evening airshows are particularly wonderful.
It’s such a treat looking around their fascinating collection of old aeroplanes (all still airworthy) and vehicles. I wouldn’t fancy flying this though, would you?
This was when we flew in to say hello to a client of mine (there can’t be many copywriters who can say that?!) at Yarnton Manor near Oxford.
It was fun showing people around the helicopter!
We got a tour of the gorgeous Jacobean manor house, too, which was a real privilege.
And finally, this was on final approach to the grass runway at Kemble. All those airliners are there being scrapped, poor things.
In non-flying news, I’ve just returned from a lovely couple of days up in Northumberland, visiting my grandparents and wandering around various excellent castles and beaches. I’ll write some more posts about the places I visited, which included Lindisfarne (pictured), Bambrugh and Alnwick.
Other ground-based activities this month have mostly involved walking. I met up with some friends for a picnic and walk at Harcourt Arboretum, which (again) I’ll write more about in another post. They have loads of beautiful peacocks there, and finding their feathers is a fun pastime!
I’ve been doing evening walks around the village as often as possible before the nights start drawing in.
The village looks particularly stunning in the golden evening light.
Finally, I also met up with a friend for coffee in Burford. If you like mooching around Cotswolds towns, Burford takes some beating, and Lynwood & Co does a fantastic flat white.