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John Strong

Basic Commercial Pilots Licence, SEP, Night, IMC, Instructor (inc tailweel) ratings.

Graduateship Exam. Institute of Physics (Degree Equivalent)

Flying Time
5,000hrs including 4,200 instructional hrs, over 40 years flying experience.
Why do I instruct
After flying as a PPL for 25 years I decided to do an instructors rating in order to improve my flying having done very little in the latter 10 years. After instructing part-time for a few years I was given the opportunity to take early release from my post at Harwell and took up a full time instructor post at Thruxton. I have never looked back since – the view from my office now is incomparable with that at Harwell.
Memorable moments
For several years I owned a PA38 Tomahawk and flew it in air races organised by the Royal Aero Club this time was most memorable but when I crossed the finishing line in the prestigious Kings Cup the feeling was especially memorable.

I started flying in 1971 learning at Biggin Hill on Victa Airtourers. Having obtained my PPL the next goal was to fly classic aircraft like the Tiger Moth and Stampe which I did at Redhill. In the mid-seventies my work moved me to Harwell in Oxfordshire and I joined a group operating a 1946 Auster at High Wycombe. This aircraft spent a lot of the time being worked on by group members which also included recovering it. With the Auster out of action a lot of the time I kept my licence “going” by flying at various airfields; Enstone, Oxford, Southampton, Popham and Thruxton where I flew a variety of aircraft . It was while at Thruxton that I decided to take the flight instructor course (see above). At Thruxton I had various roles mainly instructing but including air traffic and flying club operations. After 7 years I had become acting CFI and a CAA approved examiner but the drive there from Grove, where I live, become arduous and so I took a job at Oxford. After a chance meeting with Paul (Skipper) Fowler I started instructing for him at EFC on a part-time basis. I have always missed a real flying club atmosphere since I left Redhill and EFC provides this as well as approaching flying training in a way which the student can benefit from.

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