Thinking about your civilian licences? Help is now on hand.

I left the forces in 2001 with only a smattering of hours and decided to follow a career in civilian aviation. So what help did i get. NOTHING. I was wet behind the ears and the only people willing to help were trying to take advantage of my gratuity (what little i had) I passed the ATPL (H) exams on my own, type rated onto a couple of civvy machines and now am the QHI at a small helicopter business in Sheffield with the intention of becoming flight examiner early next year. (couldnt have done that in the army!!!!!) Its not a sob story and no i dont want any sympathy, I want to impart the knowledge I have learnt to any aviators thinking of jumping ship or otherwise. First of all the CAA is corruption against aviation, they will try to take your money or make things extremely hard for you. Secondly freelance instructors want your money. Thirdly flight schools want your money. That is the way of life in the commercial world. the trick is finding a school that will turn out a good commercial pilot and/or instructor.
As with anything its who you know not what.
Instructing is the best way into the aviation, there is a distinct lack of QHI's at the moment and although you may have to take a drop in wages you find it easier to network and find better jobs when you are actually working in the industry.
Gazelle pukes if you think you are going to get an ATPL out of your bridging course think again. The requirements say 350 hours multi pilot (i.e lynx, seaking, superpuma) not multi crew. There is a dispensation for an IR if you are green rated, but i would look into that in more detail if i were you.
For those of you that are thinking of leaving or who didnt quite get your wings or are groundies aspiring to skygodness. leave me your email and i will get in contact as i am in the process of setting up a cpl (h) modular course with flying and commercial experience.
Or alternatively before you leave pop down to Netheravon and chat to the TA pilots. the majority fly for the airlines BA,Virgin,easyJet,GB,BMI,FlyBE.....ect and helicopter charter company’s Bristows,Premiair,Air Harrods...ect and with one or two of the Regt working in Airline Ops with good contacts at most UK airports :D
Before I left the forces I did a 12 week attachment with the TA pilots in Shawbury and Netheravon and I conceed the fact that if you want to do fixed wing which believe it or not is not that easy to get into at the moment, then they are the people to talk to. I, however wanted to stay in rotary and although thoroughly nice chaps they wished me well, but were no help what so ever.

I'm intrigued, are you actually proposing to elevate the unsuccessful APC students and Groundcrew to the ranks of CPL (H) holders?

Are you actually proposing to provide full commercial ground instruction together with the full commercial rotary flight training?

Are you actually proposing to make your students aware of the cost / hours limitations that will affect them should they sign up for this proposed "cpl (h) modular course with flying and commercial experience" course?

I believe apart from your blatant advertising on ARRSE, you are flying in the face of nativity and at the expense of any AAC hopeful that may be tempted to go along with you're proposed scheme. Having slagged off the Army you proceed onto the CAA and even then you are not content, you tar the Flt Instructors / Schools with the same brush. To what end I have to ask?

If everyone is either out to make things "too" difficult and they all "want your money" - just what are you proposing? That you will run the courses on the cheap and make things easy for anyone that applies?


PS You really should have your post proof read - it's grammatical and literary awful. If first impressions are anything to go by - it sucks.

It was not my intention to slag off the Army, CAA, etc. I was merely stating the reality of life. Surely you must agree that £100.00 for the addition of a type to licence is overkill.

I am proposing a fully CPL(H) course with fully CPL flight training and a short course on commercial flying. As you probably know one of the first things an AOC holder will ask you is do you have any commercial experience. Have you been into Silverstone, Ascot etc.

As yet there is no syllabus for CPL(H), as we speak myself and the company I work for are writing the course inconjunction with the CAA. In fact the whole project has the full backing of the CAA.

On reading LASORS 2004 you will notice that for the rotary bridging course you need 2000hrs. Where for the commercial licence you only need 185. You also need 350 hours multi pilot (not multi crew bye gazelle boys) for your ATPL. So this course is designed for those people not as fortunate as you sound to be able to afford these hours in the civilian world or yet an IR.

My company also has applied to be a service provider for the enhanced learning credits scheme run by the MOD which equates to approximately £8000.00 over 3 years of financial aid for this course.

So to summarise my grammatical drivel we aim to provide a course that is accessible, pertinent and financially viable.

Does this really sound that terrible, surely even you can see I am trying to do a good thing for fellow aviators.

(at the risk of being a condescending blonker) - What a difference a day makes! That's much better, open, informative, easier on the eye and possesses a certain degree of professionalism. Despite you're obvious downer on chicken legs your post with its reasoned explanation, should bear fruit. However, I would still maintain that it is not a good idea to bite the hand that will ultimately feed you - and especially not while you still have the begging bowl in your hand!

Interesting addition to the "run of the mill" syllabus but what would the Company gain by not placing this within the Navex portion (been there, done that), why increase expenditure against TCP? What's with the "do gooder" image? - You're trying to run a business aren't you?


What happened in my experience of leaving the forces, (I was a gazelle puke for 6 years) is that there was no help. I was other arms before attending the APC and flying apart I did not enjoy being in the Air Corps ( personality clash I think), on my second tour I saw the light and wanted to transfer, too little too late, my parent corps wanted me back"worried about my career path". After excessive pleading not to go, I left and therefore proceeded to do my last 12 months (as I signed off very quickly) where I left 6 years earlier.

I was pleading with anyone who would listen for any advice/knowledge/help on information about exams/licences/courses etc.
Despite doing 12 weeks attachment to 7 Regt at Nethers and Shawbury, no help was forthcoming.

However since I have left the Forces I have been inundated with people asking for knowlege about the above mentioned topics. The company I work for now is introducing the CPL(H) modular course anyway, so I am now opening it up to any Military personnel who may be interested. It is not a do gooder attitude, of course the company will make money but the brunt of it will be borne by ELCS which will ease the financial burden of the student/aviator.

I believe that Military pilots are pretty much kept in the dark with reference to what is happening in the outside world and I thought I would just add my two pence worth.

Of course as I have already mentioned the course is still in its infancy, but for those pilots who do not have the required flying experience for the rotary bridging course, this could well be a step in the right direction for civilian commercial flying.

There are people who were good to me when I was having a hard time of it in the Air Corps, just returning the favour.

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