June Blog 21-6-2017


It has been a busy few weeks at the National Centre with the BARCS Radioglide event taking place over the late May Bank Holiday followed by the BMFA University and Schools Payload Challenge over the first weekend in June plus a couple of turn up and fly weekends.

Radioglide saw two good competition days with a number of the competitors taking the opportunity to camp on site, unfortunately the Bank Holiday Monday was a bit of a washout with heavy rain moving in so the competition was postponed.

BARCS members also made use of the events building to hold their AGM on the Sunday evening which worked well, the feedback from BARCS members attending the event has been very positive and a repeat booking looks like its in the diary for 2018.

The Payload Challenge was relocated to the National Centre after a number of years at Elvington near York.

After benefitting from the extensive concrete dispersal pan at Elvington for a considerable number of years it was with some reservations that the event was moved to the grass site at BMFA Buckminster.

The reservations were proven unfounded and a great weekend of competition took place with over 11 hours of flying taking place over the two days.

The competition rules and supporting information guided the competitors on the matter of undercarriages and the fact that they would be operating from a less than smooth surface, the net result was that it caused no problems whatsoever.

The competition slotted in perfectly at BMFA Buckminster and having access to the extensive buildings on site made the running of the competition much easier as well as far more professional, the events building represented an absolute hive of activity all weekend as teams prepared (and repaired) their aircraft.

The Payload Challenge was a truly international event with three teams joining us from China as well as the teams from all over the UK, the event also attracted a new sponsor, CargoLogicAir who sent representative to BMFA Buckminster for the duration of the competition.

We have also held a couple of lower key events with a Visit and Fly and a Fly In and swapmeet, both events saw a steady trickle of visitors but both unfortunately suffered from the weather, the future looks bright as more people become aware of the National Centre as a resource and a pleasant place to be.


Season ticket sales are going well and we now have regular groups turning up to fly which is great, a season ticket is a fantastic way of supporting the NC project.

Flying activity is starting to settle into a pattern with a good mix of activity, we have a regular (and expanding) Wednesday group, plenty of helicopter flyers and the Free Flight priority Mondays are proving popular.

The Thursday work parties are going really well and as well as keeping on top of the day to day site maintenance our group of keen and willing volunteers are taking on some new projects as well.

Why not join the friends of BMFA Buckminster group and be part of the National Centre Story? We don’t expect people to commit to every week and we just add volunteers to an email list that goes out at the beginning of each week, those that can come along just drop me a brief response in order that we can arrange lunch, its all very laid back, great fun and very satisfying,  we are always keen to hear from more volunteers and if you think you would like to join us on the occasional Thursday then drop me a line (manny@bmfa.org) so that you can be added to the Email circulation.

Flying site

The big news is the main runway, recent sunshine and showers have really prompted a growing spurt for the new seed and it is becoming a fairly lush green carpet, the first cut is likely to take place within the next couple of weeks after which time the grass should really start to strengthen and thicken, pictures to follow as soon as its cut.

Still on the subject of the runway, the battle with the local mole army continues with 17 having been forcibly removed from the premises, signs are that we are making good progress in clearing the site of these destructive little menaces but it will probably represent an ongoing ‘maintenance task’, apparently they like to live in the bottom of hedgerows and then tunnel outwards to feed (every 4 hours).

Keep an eye on the calendar for upcoming events at BMFA Buckminster and we look forward to welcoming you in the near future.