Phil Chettleburgh

As a person— ahh— ahh-
First impressions. Obnoxious, insulting, embarrassing, disgusting foul mouthed git.

Lasting impressions. A more amicable, helpful amusing true friend would be hard to find. Still Obnoxious, insulting, dembarrassing, disgusting foul mouthed git.

Been Chairman of all 3 Clubs, Started the NNHGPGC in 1991 Is dedicated to the continuity of HG in the region. Was awarded Certificate of merit by Prince Andrew at The Royal Aero Club in 2003 for his services to HG.
Virtually OWNS The Dave Loxley Trophy (awarded for longest XC Flt from Winch Launch each year avoiding Controlled Airspace)
Admined the UKNXCL from 1997 to 2004
NHGC : Chairman / secretary / newsletter editor / Treasurer in the mid to late 80's.
NNHPGC : Chairman / Newsletter editor
SCFHGC : Chairman / Newsletter Editor
(by Dave McEwen)



where were you born


Where do you live now?


Director of a multinational Communications Company (aka one man band telephone engineer who has done a few silly little jobs when on holiday for a favor)

Previous Occupation

Shop assistant. Engineer at Tom Smiths Crackers. British Telecoms engineer. Alarm engineer. Bridge Builder.

How and when did you start flying

First got involved in the sport of hang gliding in 1975, when I joined the British Hang Gliding Association for the princely sum of £5.00. At this stage of my life my main interests where getting laid, getting pissed, getting stoned and flying Peter Powell Kites. Linking Four of these beasts together gave me my first taste of free flight in a howling gale. Actually pursuing the art of hang gliding took a back seat whilst I enjoyed the pleasures of the flesh and ensuing hang overs thereafter.
Owning Norwich's premier den of iniquity gave (Number 9 Willis st) me the opportunity to meet many people. Nigel Webb was one of the people who frequented this filthy hell hole on a regular basis. One Day in 1983 Nigel announced that he was going to fly Hang Gliders with his brother Tony. I tagged along
Next thing I know I'm spending every weekend running up and down a runway hold tethers for other trainees, driving the car, or sitting in the winch. These were the Payout winch days. In return for knackering myself, and getting a sun burnt face every day (including winter) i was rewarded with flights.
Monday morning was always a struggle, as i found it rather difficult to walk. I would usually get back to normal by Friday, just in time to do it all over again.
One of the joys of Payout winching at flixton was realing the line in. There was usually a patch of liquid shit from a pile of manure. Didn't matter what direction the wind was blowing in, the line would always land in it. So when you wound the line back onto the drum, you would get sprayed ! I hate to think how many times me and Rona went into the pub afterwards, covered in pig poo, smelling rather ripe. Somehow it made the beer taste better.

Why did you stop

In 2008, after years of abuse my neck vertebrae decided to degenerate. This meant one arm wouldn't do as it was told, and i couldn't lift a glider. I also found that walking at a brisk pace was rather painful. I was informed that if i continued to fly, it could very well get worse. As i rather enjoy living , thought it would be a good idea to pack it in. 25 years didn't seem to be a bad run, and you never know… one day I might just do it again.

Which Pilots most influenced you

Edmund Potter, Paul Whitley and Alan Snowling (Snowy). All for different reasons, Ed for staying up longer, flying further than anyone else and his calm technical approach. Paul for doing things on his glider that very few people would dare to do. Snowy, well, every time he was about i felt i had something to prove. Every time i tried to prove it, i would bollix it up!

Gliders you have flown

Cobra** (bog rog) first training.
Cherrokee** : Did most of my learning on.
Cutlass : hated it!
Polaris : Small and large. Did most of my early flying on these.
Airbourne (Austrailia)
Combat (?) Bit like the Airwave Kiss but sloppy bottom wires. Flies like a Kiss but no tendency to Yaw.
FUN Sky floater type. Light weight. Good fun but has tendency to pitchup when ground handling. Made more difficult to control by the heavily raked A frame

Arial Arts Clubman: 140 :160 :180.1 Lazer2

Airwave: Magic one,two, three and Four3 Kiss4Magic 65K2, K4 Concept.6
Solar Wings : Typhoon, Fever, Rush, Rumour, Scandal, XK

Aeros C147v Stalker8, KPL19 Stealth "W"10Stealth 2:11 Stealth 3. Combat, Combat L.

(I'll add more later.. suffice to say its a long list)

Where have you flown in the UK

Not many places and most of them just the once. Bradwell, Rushup. Merthr. (add more later)

When and where was your most memorable flying experience in the UK

Scullthorpe 1998 (?) A classic NW day. Loads went XC on this day. McEwen had gone. I launched, flew to Fakenham, went back to the airfield, saw that there were problems with the winch. Caught another thermal and buggered off. Climb to 5k, straight line till i got to 2k, climb to 5k, etc 47 miles later i caught up with Dave and watched him land from a couple or three grand.(which was nice). Running out of land, i landed in the same field as Gary Aldous. 52 miles in 2 hours. Then, over the radios we heard that Justin Needham had landed at Mendlesham, He had taken off from Bradwell. (148 miles)

When and where was your most Horrid flight in the UK

Flying in very low cloud at at Cromer with Steven Partridge Hicks. We were singing rather loudly. Scary!

Where have you flown OUT of the UK

Spain : Ager. France. Forclas, Semnoz, Miilau Switzerland. Chammy, Salive. Italy: Mote Cucco. Castlelutio. Lanzagrotty. Famara. Sou. Macher. and a couple of others

Where and when was you most memorable flying experiance outside the UK

Ager 2001. launched from Mont Sec. New Davron 808 flight logger on board.
This is the first time i had flown a "Mountain". Unsure of my capabilities i flew rather cautiously for a while. Spotting some Germans thermaling i made a bee line towards them. Entering the Thermal i cranked it up in a tight circle. Next thing i know I'm rising quicker than the Germans and fly up the middle of them circle, out climbing them.
Yippee!.. this is fun! Next thing i know I'm at 11+k ASL.
A hour or so later I'm in the landing field outside the camp side. High as a kite.
Rather excitedly I starts to unpack my gear. Head in a turmoil. Bloody marvelous flight etc. Harness and instruments get put on the floor, whist i start to derig the glider. I can't wait to show EVERYBODY my baraograph trace.
I step back.
Oh bugger.
Davron 808 smashed to pieces! Rats. :-(

When and where was your most Horrid flight outside UK

Monte cucco. 1999. First flight there, watch the other pilots, to see what they do. They launch. turn left, when over the gully, crank it up and top out at 8k. easy! So i launch. Turn left, go over the gully. Get thrown all over the place. Elect to get the hell outa here. Flying away from the ridge things calm down, only i cant get up again. Head for the landing field. Long thin, into wind (2mph). Get so low that i almost catch the telephone wires making my final. Skim along the ground for the whole length of the landing field. Thankfully there is an overshoot area. Nearing the end of the overshoot field i realize this is going to hurt, cos I'm flying rather fast. Curl into ball and let go. Glider lands itself better than i have ever done!. Derig and spend the next 2 hours watching everyone else topping out at 8 k. INCLUDING McEWEN. GIT!. Another pilot on a intermediate lands. I go over to him., to thank him for landing here, and making me feel better. He points to a house not 100 yds away. " I live there " he says. Arse!

Time to brag ?, What was your "finest hour"

There are a few things that i have done that i am rather chuffed about, but i suppose the one that i feel most chuffed about is being in the top three in the UKNXCL all time tow (winch!) tables.

Who do you most admire in the sport

Anyone that is still doing it after 10 years. The likes of Tony Webb, without whom Hang Gliding would be Dead in East Anglia. Anyone who is happy to sit on the winch, and those "That do stuff" to keep us all flying.

What Trait do you most deplore in yourself

Besides being a big headed arse'ole?.. being to cautious.

What trait do you most deplore in other people

Negativity. Finding reasons not to fly.

When not flying what do you do for recreation

I'm so sad, its usually doing something else flying related.

Favorite piece of music

Floyd, old Genisis, old hippy music!

Favorite book

whats a book?.. I did read that dan brown thing( and all his variations on a theme) one afternoon.

Favorite Film

Anything that makes me cry. Lassie comes home is a prime example. Bambi would be another.

What is your greatest fear

Being Beaten by Dave McEWEN, Sharks! and dying a slow death. (in that order)

What is your perfect idea of happiness

Beating Dave McEwen

what would your motto be

"fuck em" springs readily to mind.. but i don't know why.

Whats your favorite flying story

Monte Cucco 1999. Dave McEwen takes off. The only three pilots in the air are landing Dave is the only pilot airbourne. Doesn't get up at the first attempt. Quickly goes down, down, down. Flys out over the valley to a small town. I can see him working tiny little bits of lift being generated by the small village. It looks like he is just a couple of hundred feet above it. Slowly he works the lift, and slowly he starts to climb. Half hour later and he is still less than 1000ft above the deck, when he starts to climb a bit more positively. Another 10 minutes and he is just below the ridge. You can see the sweat pouring off of his face. Five more minutes and he is just above the ridge. A brief look at his face, as he flies low overhead, tells it all. He has done it. He has escaped the Valley. He is going to top land, where he can soon get a celebratory cuppa tea, and tell every tom dick and harry of his amazing achievement. Making his final turn, he drops into budgie. Setting up for a perfect landing, in the perfect spot, after some perfect flying, he approaches the "spot"…. just as the wind turns from smack on 8 mph to 180 degree 5 mph over the back (yes that quick) overshoots, and ends up in the bottom landing field fifteen minutes latter. Bugger! Now I have to go an get him, and I'm the only one thats going to have to listen to him! OH Crap!

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