South of England Bi-plane Trip by:Steven Gray
My brother's 60th birthday was imminent and I had not thought of anything to gift him for this milestone in his life. Time was running out and so I decided to look through some gift sites on the internet in order to become "inspired."
While browsing a search engine I came across a website which advertised "Memorable Experience" activity packages. I clicked on the link and was taken to a whole world of things such as Hot-Air Ballooning, Driving a Supercar around a Racetrack, Scuba Diving with Sharks, Health Spa weekends and Gourmet days out.
My attention was drawn to a Bi-Plane trip around the south coast, as my funds were limited, but I wanted my brother to experience something wonderful to remember for his birthday. I booked two tickets for him and his wife.
When the tickets arrived, my brother's wife telephoned and asked if I would like to go in her place, as she had a fear of flying (unbeknown to me).
So, when the day arrived I picked my brother up in my 2 seater BMW Z3 and we made our way from Cheam along the A217 then A24 to Washington where we turned off for the winding A283 through the historic villages of Bramber and Steyning and followed the Adur Valley to the A27 heading west. We spotted the signs for the Shoreham Aerodrome with a sense of excitement and were conscious of small aircraft buzzing around the skies as they approached and took off.
Once parked in the free public car park we made our way to the main building. Unlike larger airports such as Gatwick and Heathrow the building was very nineteen-thirties with a real Art-Deco feel to it. We heard our plane before we saw it and my first impression was that it looked bigger than it actually was! We soon had this confirmed when the organising staff allowed only eight people on the tarmac at any one time. The De Havilland Dragon Rapide biplane seated eight passengers plus the pilotThis was indeed civilian passenger flying, thirties style!!
While waiting our turn we were able to purchase light refreshments and the staff were very courteous and polite. Then in a trice, it was our turn....At last! Entering the aircraft was not as easy as one may have first thought, as one has to haul oneself up through the door whilst placing one's left foot gingerly on the port wing (hoping it wouldn't break off !)
Once in the air the sensation was like being in a noisy mini-bus, but the views of the English Channel, Beachy Head and the Sussex Coast were absolutely stunning! Both my brother and I snapped away with our digital cameras and a small selection of those photos can be found on my tagged profile where this article has been placed...http://www.tagged.com/stupot52
The pilot flew the plane very smoothly and we were blessed with a fine sunny day.
Just as we were getting comfortable we commenced our descent back into the aerodrome. The flight was wonderful and we both did not want it to end. The plane made two more sorties that morning, meanwhile the rest of us decamped to the Aerodrome's caf where we consumed a light curry on a bed of yellow rice, all washed down with a refreshing cup of sweet tea !!
In conclusion, this was a great trip especially in view of the fact that my brother's experience of flying up until now, has been limited in his life. Because we were enjoying it so much we felt that the flight could have been longer, but in retrospect we believe that the price was well worth everything we experienced.
Website: Go to http://www.hi-crest.co.uk and click on the link "Yes to Adventure."
About the author
Steve is a young 60 year old who has travelled the world extensively.
He has spent most of his career in the Finance industry as a Money & Derivatives trader but due to his age inhibiting employment chances he now works for himself, trading online and has also set up some affiliate websites. He has also tried his hand at Male Escort work and has a small base of regular clients.
Steve is a good cook, enjoys the countryside and environment..He plays guitar (average standard). He is also interested in Alternative Healing and Spirituality. Steve is a Reiki Master, Indian Head Massage and Hopi Ear-Candling specialist.