Pilots should be aware that CAP flights do not involve any alleviation from the privileges of their licences or from the UK Air Navigation Order as it applies to private pilots. The skills obtained for the issue of a flying licence will be largely adequate for most CAP flights. However, there are some extra skills that pilots will need to practise such as first class crew co-operation when working with an observer, very accurate navigation and working as a team with other pilots, observers and ground personnel. Workload involving these new skills can be challenging at times but pilots enjoy the experience and often achieve skill levels well above those required by their licences. Pilots will be expected to respond to requests for assistance whenever possible and must have fairly easy access to their aircraft (therefore relying on rental or club aircraft is not ideal). Pilots must also be willing to contribute a proportion of their annual flying, and therefore costs, to assisting their community. It is a fact that CAP pilots will frequently operate as observers, perhaps in unfamiliar aircraft. In some ways this is the best bit – the skills associated with being an observer (see below) may be new to many pilots and rising to this challenge is usually a lot of fun. Pilots will be expected to maintain the very highest levels of compliance, knowledge, airmanship and captaincy whilst working within the Voluntary Sector.
Observers should ideally have previous flying experience in light or military aircraft. Other than pure observing, the role also involves planning, airborne map and navigation work, crew co-operation, short range radio work, aerial photography and the processing and distribution of information. Ideally, pilots and observers team up as constituted crews and this often leads to a high degree of understanding and co-operation in the air, which can be very satisfying. However, observers may need to become familiar with flying in a wide variety of aircraft types as each may require specific considerations.
The role of supporter involves as little or as much as you like. As a charity the UKCAP needs constant organisational and financial support. Supporters can get involved by helping to organise exercises, fundraising, administration or general maintenance of documentation. Some supporters also operate as advisers if they have appropriate valuable experience. If you would like to support the organisation financially but would rather not become fully involved, you can still join, perhaps offering to volunteer at a later date.
If you are interested in joinging us as a Crew member please take a few moments to complete the form below. In addition to the contact information it is important that you also complete the Prospective Crew Member section:
For Pilots: Licence Held, Ratings, Hours (Overall & P1), (If you are an owner which is NOT essential - Aircraft type & Reg, where hangered), brief details of your flying experiance and and an indication of why joining Sky Watch is of interest to you.
For Observers: brief details of your experiance and and an indication of why joining Sky Watch is of interest to you.
In addition please let us know of any special skills or experiance you have, that may be of use to help on running the operational side or the charity overall.