Saturday 16th to Wednesday 20th

Saturday 16th.   An Atlantic depression brought low cloud and  13mm of rain to the site, the front clearing the site around 1430 hrs but clearing skies not arriving until around 1600 hrs, meaning it was a non-flying day.

Sunday 17th.  A moderate to fresh S’ly that veered into the WSW as the day progressed, brought in frequent heavy showers, depositing another 8 mm of rain and keeping gliders and pilots earth bound.  The opportunity was however taken, for the sunny skies of the simulator to be explored.

Monday 18th.  With the centre of low pressure not far away, the unstable air mass again resulted in periods of rain and heavy showers in a light to moderate W’ly flow, with another 8 mm of rain to add to the steadily accumulating total.  Needless to say, no flying was possible.

Tuesday 19th.  The atmospheric pressure finally staggered over 1000 mb and in a light to moderate WSW’ly, flying commenced at around 1030 hrs off runway 24, landings being on 20.  However, witha trough over NE England, heavy showers and thunderstorms soon developed and flying was halted late morning as a heavy shower deluged the site  with 7 mm of rain.  Clearing skies mean a brief resumption of flying, but more showers led to abandonment of flying by mid afternoon.  In all 8 ATs and a single Falke flight were squeezed out of the day, one of the K21s, the DG1000 and the Discus being flown, but lift was hard to find between the showers and flight times were generally in the 15-20 minute range. Ian Plant/Richard Watson had the best of the day with 25 minutes in the K21.  3 Trial Lesson pupils were flown as well as a BBC cameraman taking location shots for a BBC programme on the activities of the Air Ambulance.   The site also welcomed back the Fournier RF4 and 5 that had called in enroute to a Fournier rally at Husbands Bosworth the previous weekend and had dodged the showers to Sutton for an  overnight stop. 

Tuesday 20th.  Briefing saw the site just in cloud and, with rain setting in shortly afterwards and persisting for most of the day,  another 10 mm was added to the July total.  No flying was possible, delaying the departure of the visiting RF4 and 5, so the opportunity was taken to continue with preparations for the Northerns which are due to start on Saturday, the 23rd July.