General Aviation

Published on December 9th, 2021 | by Mark Dwyer

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Galway Flying Club Celebrates 75 years

2021 is an exciting year in the history of Irish aviation as Galway Flying Club celebrates 75 years. The club is the longest-operating flying club in the country, founded in 1946 and originally based in Oranmore. In 1974 they were invited to move to Galway Airport at Carnmore by the then-owners, and has been operating there ever since.

Galway Flying Club is made up of around 100 members from all walks of life who share a common bond in their love of aviation. GFC operate two modern 4-seater Cessna aircraft. They are not a professional flight school, but rather a flying club with an incredible voluntary ethos and is blessed with enthusiastic members from Galway and surrounding counties who commit much to the Club and to supporting the local community.

Galway Flying Club Members 1985

Behind the scenes, there is much that goes on, all on a voluntary basis. The Club provides training up to Private Pilot Licence level; more recently it was awarded ATO (Approved Training Organisation) status by the IAA allowing it to train pilots to the level of Flight Instructor.

Galway Flying Club’s status as an ATO – one of just a few in the country – is testament to the quality of the Club’s instructors and the systems and procedures they implement. The success of the Club is recognised on a national platform, having twice been awarded the General & Sport Aviation Award by the aviation industry. Most recently, RTE’s Nationwide has completed filming the story of Galway Flying Club, which is due to air early next year.

Due to the present Covid situation, the Club are unable to celebrate this achievement as they would like. However, they hope to be in a position to mark the occasion at a more suitable time in the coming months. For more information, check out the Club website, www.galwayflyingclub.org , or email secretary@galwayflyingclub.org .

Club Members regularly get to enjoy these views over Galway City

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About the Author

Mark is an airline pilot flying the Boeing 737 for a major European airline. In addition he is also a Type Rating Instructor, Type Rating Examiner and Base Training Captain on the B737. Outside of commercial flying Mark enjoys flying light aircraft from the smallest 3 Axis microlights up to heavier singles. He is also an instructor and EASA Examiner on single engines and a UK CAA Examiner. He flies the Chipmunk for the Irish Historic Flight Foundation (IHFF). Mark became the Chairman of the National Microlight Association of Ireland (NMAI) in 2013 and has overseen a massive growth in the organisation. In this role he has worked at local and national levels. In 2015, Mark won ‘Upcoming Aviation Professional Award’ at the Aviation Industry Awards sponsored by the IAA. Mark launched this website back in 2002 while always managing the website, he has also been Editor and Deputy Editor of FlyingInIreland Magazine from 2005 to 2015.



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