Learning to Fly
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Learning to fly

Learning to fly is not difficult but demands a degree of application and commitment. There are two levels of private pilot’s licence available, the JAR-FCL PPL valid throughout Europe and the less versatile National PPL for UK use only. The NPPL requires less strict medical standards and can be obtained in as little as 35 flying hours, whereas the JAR-FCL PPL requires a minimum of 45 flight hours. Students are required to pass a flight skills test, a practical navigation exercise, a practical radio-telephony exercise, and a number of theory examinations. These are the same for both types of licence. More details can be found at (CAP804)

At The Sherwood Flying Club Ltd we have been successfully training pilots for over fifty years. Our instructors are all widely experienced and fully qualified to CAA standards. Our aircraft are maintained to a strict CAA schedule regardless of cost - safety is paramount - and are fully insured.

The Introductory Flight; Your First Flying Lesson

If you’re thinking of learning to fly you might wish to take advantage of our Introductory Flying Lesson scheme. These are booked and paid for in advance, and can make a wonderful gift. There is a choice of either a 30 minute or 40 minute flight, and included in the price is a certificate to commemorate the occasion.

Immediately prior to the flight, the prospective student is given a comprehensive briefing by a qualified flying instructor who will explain what will happen during the trip. Once airborne the student will be allowed to take the controls while the instructor navigates, talks on the radio and generally ensures the safe conduct of the flight. He will demonstrate various aspects of flight, including turning, climbing, descending, straight and level flight and of course take-off and landing.

Post flight there will be a short debrief to enable the student to ask further questions and perhaps decide whether to join the club. You will be able to join the club on the same day if you wish. The membership year runs from June to June but we operate a 'pro rata' scheme where depending on when in the year you join, the fee will be reduced.

You can purchase and print a voucher on this website, by telephone on 0115 9811402 on club days (Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays) or you can call in to see us at the address below and purchase your voucher and book your lesson at the same time. We encourage payment by either credit or debit card where there is no extra fee, but can accept cash or cheques if you prefer. Vouchers are valid for six months.


Piper PA38 Tomahawk

Our Training Aircraft
Piper PA 38 Tomahawk

Chosen for its proven reliability, predictable handling qualities and student comfort, we're sure you'll agree with us it's the ideal aircraft for student pilots to master the art of flying.

Specifically designed for training the PA38 is powered by the dependable and very widely used Avco Lycoming O-235 engine and weighs in at around 750 kg. Top speed is a sporting 125 mph with a rate of climb in excess of 700 feet per minute.

Next Steps

If you decide to go ahead, have a chat with your instructor and arrange a flying schedule to suit your availability and pocket. It's also a good idea to seek advice on which books and flight equipment you'll need from the club shop to help you prepare for your lessons.

You're certain to find the flying training syllabus interesting as you progress through basic manoeuvring to take off and landings and finally cross country navigation. You'll also experience the thrill and satisfaction of solo flying as for around one quarter of your course you'll be the pilot in command.

You may rest assured that you will be personally guided though the training and each step will be fully briefed and explained in advance to maintain best training practice and enjoyment.


PPL/NPPL Ground Instruction Courses

Before qualifying as a pilot you will need to learn the theory of, and pass examinations in, a number of aviation-related subjects. These are:

  1. Air Law
  2. Operational Procedures
  3. Human Performance & Limitations
  4. Navigation & Radio Aids
  5. Meteorology
  6. Aircraft (General)
  7. Principles of Flight
  8. Flight Performance & Planning
  9. JAR-FCL Communications (PPL)

We run a programme of courses covering these subjects and all students are welcome to attend. All courses take place in the clubhouse at Tollerton. We recommend that students use the Trevor Thom series of textbooks. The relevant examinations can be conducted within the club environment by our resident ground school examiner. Normally all examinations should be passed within an 18 month period. Further details can be obtained direct from the Civil Aviation Authority Website PPL Ground Training Syllabus.