Amanda and Dave's story
We met in 1992 and very quickly realised we were as mad as each other for enjoying life and giving it all we had when it comes to new adventures or long lived passions. Dave talked about flying constantly, as he still does, but back then it was all about learning to fly… finding the money…. finding the time…..praying for weather. Yes we were in the same boat as all our students, for a couple of years at least.
Dave and my Dad bought their first microlight - the Alpha, he passed his GFT and we went on to enjoy flying as often as possible. We went to fly-ins, went for long flights with me bravely navigating from the back, we went for lunch to places such as Barton and Netherthorpe. One year Dave and my Dad did the ‘Round Britain rally’ that was a talking point for quite some time.
Dave chose to follow his passion and became an AFI (Assistant Flying Instructor) under the safe wing of Mark Jackson at Barton; he qualified as a flying instructor and took the opportunity of teaching flex wing up at Crosland Moor (not for the faint hearted he was told) .. but he had flown from this site for some time and he decided that he could give it a shot. Dave had been instructing at Crosland Moor 2002 - 2005, he certainly enjoyed the challenge!
Then due too many students and not enough good weather in Huddersfield, we decided to start looking for a place of our own in France, our dream would be for us to find a farm with enough land for us to have runways, located near the Charante for good weather and be close to a budget airline which gives easy access for visiting students. Well our dream came to fruition when we found the ideal spot, located centrally between Poitiers and Limoges. The farm certainly needed some work to bring it up to visitor’s standards, but we worked hard through 2006 and by 2007 felt that we could offer a warm friendly welcome to our cosy farmhouse and go flying from the 650m runway in the back garden!
See you soon, Amanda & Dave
We first met John in 2012 when he came to look at a piece of land we had for sale. John had recently retired from the RAF and was travelling France, looking to possibly settle in the area. When he found out that we were looking for an AFI he joined the team and started working towards the qualification which he gained in 2013. John has now been teaching with us for 2 years and has even bought a house nearby. We look forward to many more years of working with John.
James and Hazel’s story
James first came out to Wanafly back in 2008 as a student after talking to us at the Flying show in 2007, he completed a course to gain his NPPL for a fixed wing microlight. In 2009 he then decided to bite the bullet and move out to France to work towards his AFI which he achieved in 2010.
Hazel also came to us as a student in July 2010 and this is when she and James first met. The rest, as they say, is history! After spending some time in the UK and marrying in November 2014 they decided to move back out to France for James to continue with his teaching career and Hazel to support Amanda in the running of the business.