Profiles

The Europa Club Committee

The committee comprises both elected and co-opted volunteers, each looking after a particular aspect of the Club’s operations.

Peter Kember

Peter Kember

Flying experience

Former air cadet and commissioned RAFVR officer with flying experience in gliders, Beverley, Anson, Dakota and Britannia aircraft with P1(UT) on Hastings, Chipmunk, and Jet Provost T3 and T5. Over 2000 hours P1 on light single and twin engined aeroplanes including Rallye, Cessna 152, 172, Aeronca Chief, TB10, Yak 52, Harvard, Beagle Pup and Airedale, Jodel, Tiger Moth, Mooney, ARV, RV4 and 6, Rollason Condor, Luton Minor, Grumman AA5, Zenair, Dynamic SLA, Aztec, Cessna 401 and various ragwing Pipers including Tri Pacer, Colt, Clipper, Super Cub and Cub float plane. Also Shadow, Cyclone and Eurostar microlights and MD269 and 500 helicopters. IMC rating in Robin 400 aeroplanes. 800 hours on monowheel Europae and 600 hours on Trigear Europae with experience of Rotax 912, 912S and 914 and Subaru engines and VP and CS propellors.. Europa flight testing of G-OPJK, G-BXDY, G-BXLK, G-MAVE, and G-TOPK. Builder of first homebuilt Europa to fly (October 1995) and the so called Kit Number 1000 (May 2005).

Special skills/Experience

Building, flight and development testing of Europa aeroplanes. Special interest in speed and performance modifications. Shareholder and operator of Laddingford Aerodrome in West Kent. Chartered Town Planner and Member of the Royal Aeronautical Society specialising in the planning, development and safeguarding of small airports and aerodromes. Member of the CAA General Aviation Consultative Committee (GACC). Advisor to General Aviation Awareness Council (GAAC), Flying Farmers Association (member) and parliamentary spokesmen on aerodrome planning/safeguarding.

Locality

Based at Laddingford Aerodrome near Tonbridge in Kent. Living in Rotherfield, East Sussex. Regular visitor to Villeneuve sur Lot-Roge aerodrome in SW France.

Aircraft, and current status

Builder of Europa G-OPJK “the First of the Many” exhibited at DTI offices in central London and on BBCs Blue Peter programme, sold to make way for building of Trigear HiTop XS/NG G-TOPK which has been flying since 2005.

General Comments

Likes to tour in the Europa, to restore and to drive classic cars (Riley 1.5, MGA, Porsche 911) and classic motorcycles (BMW R65). Interested in setting up a southern Europa builder-assist facility. Having flown many of the newcomers the Europa is still the best touring / handling and now very easy to build kitplane.”

David Joyce

David Joyce

The Europa has proved to be the perfect touring plane for me, and I have derived immense satisfaction from the many Europa Club trips I have been on round Europe, so it was a pleasure to become Trips Coordinator and look after future trips.

Flying Experience

Many hours of flying models in my youth! 25 years of gliding, flying 30 different gliders. 1250 hours over 17 years PPL-A & TMG in 21 types of powered plane. Owned Falke and RS4 motorgliders. Five years and 132 hours of glider tugging (an awful lot of take off and landings!) in Pawnee, Bellanca Scout and Cub – all tail draggers. Have much enjoyed doing Mountain/Altiport rating and aerobatics (AOPA certificate). Of the 50+ types of aircraft I have flown only the RS4 and my DG300 glider come close to equalling the Europa for sheer flying pleasure!

Special Skills/Experience

Not a lot that one can talk about in polite company (much of my working life was devoted to getting 10,000 women pregnant!) I do have some aptitude and special tools for doing things in confined spaces!

Aircraft, and Current Status

Kit 402, work began 1 Jan 1999, having retired the night before. With background in gliding & tail-daggers it had to be a mono, and no regrets since. Did absolutely everything myself except spray the gel coat on. Finished Spring 2002, and 800+ hrs flown since. Have flown it to 20+ countries. Built a 115 litre long range tank and did a major uprate of panel in preparation for flying to Australia in 2009, but that plan shelved when my son developed Motor Neurone Disease. Have since had a number of exciting trips with him including to the North Cape.

Vacant Position

Bob Hitchcock

Bob Hitchcock

Retired 2016. Four decades working for a single company; Vaillant. €3 billion turnover. Manufacturer of heating, ventilation and air-conditioning products. Major plants in Nantes, Remscheid and Belper. UK Senior manager for Logistics, Credit Management, e-commerce and Business Continuity Management. Divorced. Two children. Europa club member since 2006. Based at Apperknowle airstrip, Coal Aston, Derbyshire.

Flying

More than a thousand hours of flying of which the greatest is European touring. IR(R), Night and SLMG ratings. Early training on the usual Cessnas, Pipers and half a dozen other types. Then interests in a Monowheel Falke, followed by a Tri-gear 80HP Europa. Initiated into longer range European touring by the Europa club in 2006 and then never looked back. In 2008 acquired outright and fell in love with Sadie, (G-BYSA) a 100HP Europa XS Monowheel with VP prop. Eight wonderful years of pure flying joy until her tragic destruction in August 2016. Now in a new relationship with Meg, (G-MEGG) another 100HP Europa 912ULS XS Monowheel. Woodcomp 3000N VP propeller. Mode S, 8:33. Vacuum standard T panel, Garmin and SkyDemon GPS.

Acknowledgements

Builder of G-BYSA; The late Bryan Allsop.
Builder of G-MEGG; Martin Mavers

Steve Pitt

Steve Pitt

I was a ‘spotter’ in my early years and this started my interest in aircraft. I wanted to join the RAF and won a Flying Scholarship, but did not follow that up with a career in the forces - that is a long story. When I realised that I could build my own aircraft a whole new world opened up for me and with early retirement I found the time to complete ‘DH in 2006 after 8 years.

Since then I have wanted to give something back to the club, which was very supportive in my building years. I have been involved in Sun’n’Fun for the last 15 years and also manned the Club/Company stands at Sywell and Booker, as well as helping to organise the AGMs at Popham, Laddingford and North Weald.

I have spent the last 6 years as Chairman and felt it was time to make way for newer blood, but I remain a staunch supporter of the Club and its aims as the 2017 Treasurer.

Flying experience

600 hours over 40 years, initially Cherokees and Cessnas, but more recently 350 hours in my Europa in 11 years. PPL but previously had an IMC.

Special skills/experience

I built Europa G-SMDH without any engineering experience or background. The only thing I did not do was the painting. Always keen to learn more about the engineering side and have helped Modifications Rep over the years with some of the Club modifications to our aircraft.

Locality

Petersfield, Hampshire; aircraft usually based at Fairoaks (EGTF)

Aircraft, and current status

Kit 403, XS, Trigear, 912S, Reg G-SMDH, 332 hours at 8/2017

General comments

“(One of) The best things about the Europa is the people. I met with several builders and owners when I first was about to get the kit - several of these are now firm friends. They showed me that the build was feasible, they helped with advice and hands-on help over the years and gave morale boosts when the build got challenging.”

Mike Potts

Mike Potts

Responsible For

  • Keeping the membership records uptodate
  • Administering the annual subs/dues
  • Providing new members with club information

Flying Experience

Started gliding with the ATC in the 60's and then spent 15 years keeping young men off the streets and out of mischief.

Started power flying in the late 90's after a family induced layoff.

500+hrs power and 250+ gliding.

Really enjoy flying the 914 mono-wheel, glider on steroids?

 

Special Skills/Experience

Spent many happy years in IT dealing with data issues, so memsec role not too much of a culture shock.

 

Mike Gregory

Mike Gregory

Responsible for promoting safety in all its aspects. These include safety in the hangar and workshop, as well as operating safely in the air and on the ground. Willing to discuss the safety aspects of any Europa accident or incident, actual or potential, and where appropriate to take action through the LAA to develop and maintain safe operating procedures as well as the technical aspects of airworthiness.

Flying Experience

Learned to fly on Chipmunks at Elstree and continued with the Air Squadron. Other experience includes the Miles Hawk III (Magister), Auster, Beagle Pup, Cherokee, Cessna 150, Dyn-Aero MCR 01, Slingsby Firefly, Tiger Moth, and Robin DR 400. Currently part owner of a Jodel DR 250. Total 630 hours.

Special Skills/Experience

Served 37 years as an engineer officer in the Royal Air Force, including the maintenance of avionics systems and work as a project officer on the introduction to service of the Tornado, Hawk, Bulldog and Lynx. Subsequently worked at Cranfield University researching into design for manufacture in the aerospace industry and distributed design teamworking across industry sectors. Employed by the Institute for Manufacturing, Cambridge University Engineering Department as an external tutor. In 1996 (at Ivan Shaw’s request) designed a circuit diagram for the Europa and wrote an electrical chapter for the builders’ manual, including a section on basic electrics.

Locality

Cambridgeshire, flying DR 250 from Cambridge airport.

Aircraft, and Current Status

Building Europa Classic kit number 94.

General Comments

I would encourage everyone concerned with Europas to share their experiences and knowledge to help others to understand what goes right and what might go wrong. Safety is no accident!

Fly safely

Nigel Graham

Nigel Graham

Responsible For

Modification information.

Flying Experience

PPL (FAA) “Single Engine Land and Sea” with a “Complex” endorsement. 250 hours, of which 125 hours on Tiger Moths. Amphibious Super Cub, 250hp Maul amphib.

My most memorable flights are every minute in a Tiger Moth, beating up Kemble in an Antinov AN2, flying at ten feet inverted over a reservoir in California in a Stearman.

Special Skills/Experience

I trained as an avionics technician, building airborne radar units. This was followed by a career in the Electronics industry.

I developed good composite skills building fiberglass canoes as a hobby and this later came in handy when I purchased my Europa. I developed a good mechanical aptitude with my first British motorcycle, which broke down every week. My love of motorcycles, particularly old ones, has endured to this day. I restore these when I should be building my Europa.

Locality

Eastleigh, Hampshire

Aircraft, and Current Status

Kits 147. I am attempting to gain the record for the longest Europa build time whilst simultaneously achieving the “Most Modified Europa” award.

Pete Jeffers

Pete Jeffers

Background

I have been the Europa Club LAA/PFA rep for about 5 years. My interest in Europas started in 1994 when we received kit 52 (or at least bits and pieces of Kit 52). The build was completed and I first flew it on 26th September 1996. Since then it has flown 1400hrs and to this day remains my favourite toy. We learnt a lot in those early days of building and now I am pleased to be able to pass on some of that knowledge to more recent builders and flyers.

Responsibilities

My job is to keep the committee informed of issues relating to the build and maintenance of our fleet of Europas, also where necessary to liaise with the LAA re issues from our members. I also try to help members directly with any problems or queries they may have on technical matters.

Flying Experience

After 11,300 launches in gliders over 36 years from 1962, I left gliding soon after my Europa was completed in 1998. At that time I was a Fully Categorised instructor with a gold badge with two diamonds. I also have 1500 hrs P1 in all kinds of S/E aircraft starting in 1966 with Austers & Cubs and moving on through 32 other types including SLMG’s & TMG’s. For the last 7 years I have been a CAA Class Rated instructor working under the auspices or the LAA Coaching Scheme.

During my working life I flew 13,000 hours as a Flight Engineer on B707, Lockheed Tri-Star and B747 plying world wide routes.

Special Skills and Experience

Straight from school I was apprenticed in the air transport business for 5 years, which included an engineering degree course at London University and the obtaining of ARB, now CAA, Engine and Airframe Licenses. Away from work I became a PFA/LAA inspector and also a Glider inspector with the BGA. All in all I have devoted most of my life to aviation in several of its various forms.

Location

I am based at and do most of my flying from Booker or Wycombe Airpark as it is now known.

Tony Wickens

Tony Wickens

I am Responsible for editing the quarterly Europa Club publication, the Europa Flyer.

This task can only be accomplished with the active support of members who take the time to write articles on trips or anything to do with the Europa build, flying, maintenance, modifications, news items et al. Without this support there would be no Europa Flyer.

Flying Experience

I started flying in 1959, soloing from Woodley just before its closure, and completed my PPL training at White Waltham in 1960/61.

I have owned Jodel D119 G-ATJN and rebuilt Piper L4 Cub G-AKTH from a basket case over 7 years in the late 80’s early 90’s. I own a share in a Jodel D9 and Europa Monowheel G-OMIK. Even so, building really plays havoc with one’s currency and I am now working hard to complete kit 353 to join the ranks of those happy Europa flyers.

Special Skills/Experience

I studied aircraft engineering and am a Chartered Engineer in Mechanical, Production and Measurement and Control Engineering. Most of my working career was spent with a major aircraft instrument and avionics company.

I lived in Brazil for 4 years setting up an instrument repair and support structure at the formation of Embraer and travelled extensively in development of my employer’s avionics and systems business. I also worked for several US aerospace companies before spending 12 years running my own consultancy business. During this time I worked with US aerospace and vehicle electronic system companies helping to develop their business in Europe.

Locality

I still fly from White Waltham where G-OMIK is kept and I am spending as much time as possible building my Europa at my residence in Bracknell, England.

David Joyce

David Joyce

The Europa has proved to be the perfect touring plane for me, and I have derived immense satisfaction from the many Europa Club trips I have been on round Europe, so it was a pleasure to become Trips Coordinator and look after future trips.

Flying Experience

Many hours of flying models in my youth! 25 years of gliding, flying 30 different gliders. 1250 hours over 17 years PPL-A & TMG in 21 types of powered plane. Owned Falke and RS4 motorgliders. Five years and 132 hours of glider tugging (an awful lot of take off and landings!) in Pawnee, Bellanca Scout and Cub – all tail draggers. Have much enjoyed doing Mountain/Altiport rating and aerobatics (AOPA certificate). Of the 50+ types of aircraft I have flown only the RS4 and my DG300 glider come close to equalling the Europa for sheer flying pleasure!

Special Skills/Experience

Not a lot that one can talk about in polite company (much of my working life was devoted to getting 10,000 women pregnant!) I do have some aptitude and special tools for doing things in confined spaces!

Aircraft, and Current Status

Kit 402, work began 1 Jan 1999, having retired the night before. With background in gliding & tail-daggers it had to be a mono, and no regrets since. Did absolutely everything myself except spray the gel coat on. Finished Spring 2002, and 800+ hrs flown since. Have flown it to 20+ countries. Built a 115 litre long range tank and did a major uprate of panel in preparation for flying to Australia in 2009, but that plan shelved when my son developed Motor Neurone Disease. Have since had a number of exciting trips with him including to the North Cape.

Tim Houlihan

Tim Houlihan

The webmaster helps keep the web site current.

Flying Experience

PPL/A gained Nov 1977 flying the DHC1 Chipmunk and Cessna 150. I allowed my license to lapse after only 54 hours total time in 1979. In August 2002 I revalidated my license at Gloucester (Staverton) on PA28’s after a gap of about 23 years.

When I started converting onto my Europa I had a total flight time of 80 hours spread over about 26 years. To date (Feb 2012) I have about 450 hours on Europa G-BZTH, most as P1. Tango Hotel has been from the Outer Hebrides to Switzerland, Brittany to Berlin and also to Texel in the Netherlands.

Special Skills/Experience

Can talk about aeroplanes for hours. I have, with help from family and friends, carried out virtually all the build personally including the painting . The painting showed that it was not done profesionaly, so some years ago I had it prepared and painted by The Vaughan family at their base in the Forest of Dean.

Locality

I live in Gloucester and currently keep G-BZTH at Defford Croft farm in Worcestershire.

Aircraft, and Current Status

Kit 10, G-BZTH classic monowheel with Rotax 912. Build started Nov. 1993, first flight was in December 2002. Having converted to the monowheel I am still expanding my expertise on the Europa (a super little aircraft).

General Comments

In the past I claimed a world record as having the longest build time of any Europa so far! But I have lost this honour to Roger Lloyd who got his full permit in 2011.

I was a Radar technician in the RAF for 10 years on Electronic counter measures. We got a mention in the infamous “Spycatcher” book, buy me a pint and I’ll tell you all about it. I then worked as a Flight Trials Engineer at Warton on the Jaguar program for some years including its postproduction development. I then worked as a Systems Engineer for a Dutch company that makes large format digital printers amongst other things. I now work part time at a Primary School in Gloucester.

Rowland Carson

Mike Potts

Bob Hitchcock

Tim Weert

Remi Guerner

Jim Butcher