Ulster Gliding Centre,
the only gliding facility in Northern Ireland, operated by The
Ulster Gliding Club Ltd.
Number NI 006828. Incorporated in N.I. Registered office at
PFS & Partners Ltd.,
16 Main Street,
Limavady, BT49 0EU.
'Glideability' - Access for people with disabilities
The club welcomes people with disabilities and makes every effort to
provide trial lessons and full membership on a 'mainstream' basis as
for people without disabilities. For those individuals or groups who
are unable to take up 'mainstream' membership, the club provides special
midweek events for individuals or groups according to demand.
For many years the Ulster Gliding Club has been setting aside many
Wednesdays and Fridays during the summer months for flying groups of
people with disabilities. Last year more than fifty persons suffering
from a wide range of disabilities participated in this scheme and it
was most rewarding to observe that many had visited the Club on previous
occasions and had returned to sample once again the thrill of modern
day gliding. The accessible Visitors' Centre has modern facilities including
a kitchen, leisure areas, television, and excellent views across the
airfield. New concrete pathways, ramps, and a disabled parking area
have been added all of which make a visit to the Club a "must do" activity.
Group flying for those with disabilities will commence in May and continue
on many Wednesdays and Fridays to late September. Groups may be of any
size up to a maximum of 12 persons. The current standard price for a
trial lesson is £80 including three months membership of the club commencing
on the date of the first lesson, however, as a result of a charitable
donation made to the Club some time ago, it has been possible to set
the cost of a flight for those with disabilities at £50. So why not
take advantage of this very generous offer? Come and fly with the Ulster
Gliding Club this summer and enjoy a bird's eye view of Rathlin Island,
see the majestic beauty of the north coast, and maybe even get a glimpse
of the Mull of Kintyre.
The club has been assisted by Sport Northern Ireland Lottery Fund
and The Enkalon Foundation to purchase a specially adapted glider that provides
equality of access for people who have a disability affecting the lower limbs.
The glider is fitted with hand controls to replace the normal foot operated rudder
pedals so that the same skill level and progress can be made as for able bodied
The sport is suitable
for males and females of any age however design of the two-seat gliders allows
a maximum weight of 103 kg
/ 227 lb./ 16 st. 3 lb. per occupant. Young
people are welcome and they gain
maximum benefit from a lesson if they are
of sufficient stature to be able to reach all of the controls.
to a podcast of a radio feature that was broadcast on Radio Foyle during the formal
opening of our new facility for people with disabilities. Hear a wheelchair user
describing his flight, live from the cockpit. <click
here for podcast - 10 Mb>
For full details and to book a day, contact Jim Weston
Telephone O287O358196, mobile O7525268959,
replace # above with @
The club's new visitor centre
and the hangar have level access for wheelchair users and there is a wheelchair
accessible w.c. facility in the new visitors centre. The airfield itself is of
short level grass but it is not normally required to have wheelchairs move on
Help with boarding
operated hoist is available to assist with entry and exit for wheelchair users
and those with mobility problems.
design of the two-seat gliders allows a maximum weight of 103 kg or 227 lb. or
16 Stone per occupant. Young people are welcome however they should be physically
large enough to be able to reach the controls of the glider in order to gain maximum
benefit from a lesson.
Rhonda Richardson, Fit 4 U Project,
Armagh and Dungannon Health Action Zone explains:
the activity of directing the glider was good for the user’s coordination and
mentally, the confidence gained from this feeling of control promoted a sense
of achievement. Controlling the glider also helped concentration and required
focus. As noted by many users, gliding was also a very relaxing experience, the
silence of the flight and marvelous views and freedom produced a calming feeling.
For those who were blind the sensation and feeling of gliding were even more apparent.”
User comments recorded by people with disabilities who
have sampled gliding at Bellarena :-
"Fantastic experience. Thank
you very much. The best twenty-five minutes of my life."
experience, great freedom on my own without my wheelchair."
are very patient and explain everything to you. Nothing is too much for them to
help you. The group I was with, all had different disabilities."
staff were helpful, understanding and patient."
day, everyone very friendly."
"It made me feel I could
"For the first time in seven years, I actually
forgot that I had a disability."
312KB version> Low res. - suits dial-up
for 1.2MB version> High res. - suits broadband
- The Ulster Gliding Club is a member of Aerobility
(Formerly The British Disabled Flying Association)