WHO ARE WE
We are an association of farmers, foresters and landowners who own an aircraft or operate an airstrip. Those who work in businesses related to agriculture may also be eligible to join. We organise events for all our members normally 6-7 each year. Over the last 40 years, we have visited almost every country in Europe and some North African countries. We donate 20% of membership fees to AOPA, LAA, GAAC and GASCo and we have representation at the major bodies within aviation, GAAC, GAP and GASCo.
Working together ensures our voice is heard and allows us to protect our right and privilege to be able to operate our own strips. We cooperate and keep a good relationship with Search and Rescue, Border Agency, Special Branch and the Air Ambulance.
HOW DID WE START
The Association was founded in 1974, originally with about 90 members. They were brought together by an article in Farmers Weekly, instigated by one of our founder members who wrote a letter to the weekly magazine. He pointed out that as he flew around the country, he noticed a number of farm strips and wondered if there would be any chance of getting these like-minded people together. This was achieved and the Association has slowly matured to a point now where although we still like to keep it low key, we run some very interesting meetings both in this country and abroad. I think one of the reasons for its a fairly laid back success is that whenever we meet, we have two things in common. The flying part is the basis of endless conversation in itself, with every flight being a story and adventure. Flying entails controlling the aircraft, radio communications, navigation and the most volatile of all, dealing with the weather. The second part being farming, which again comprises endless common subjects such as the crops, livestock, politics and again, that volatile weather. The great thing is that the two parts, farming and flying, complement each other in that a big part of farming is observation, seeing the crops grow, checking on the sheep etc., and what better way of doing these tasks than from the air. Farmers are also forever wondering what their neighbours are doing and the ultimate way of seeing what’s hidden round the back of the shed is to fly innocently over their farms and observe!