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Notes from the 2019 BMAA Instructor Seminar

Updated: Aug 2, 2019

I attended this year’s BMAA Instructor Seminar on Tuesday 12th February which was held at The Crown and Cushion Hotel in Chipping Norton.

Here are my notes from some of the presentations. I did not capture notes for everything so unfortunately some things are missed out..

  • The BMAA are trying to grow the sport, not just their membership numbers.


  • The BMAA are hoping for 600kg and 45kts stall speed but the CAA could decide otherwise

  • It could be that a new category is created between the current definition of a microlight and 600kg.

  • Dropping the term “microlight” is being considered and renaming the category something else is being considered

Amateur Built

  • The BMAA are hoping for further concessions from the CAA on training on amateur-built microlights. An update may be given in September 2019.

  • The CAA is not happy with giant syndicates of more than 20 members and are considering revoking the right to train on an amateur-built aircraft where the student owns less than a certain percentage (perhaps 5%).

Microlight Statistics.

Microlight Licencing Statistics.

  • Hopefully from 30th April the BMAA will be able to issue licences directly which should significantly reduce turn-around times.

  • The number of licence applications is declining. In 2018 there was only 332 applications (354 in 2017, and average of 391 from 2010-2018).

  • 3.5% of licence applications are from women

  • 17% of licence applications are flex-wing

  • 83% of licence applications are fixed-wing.

  • There has been a steady decline in flex applications.

  • For comparison, 37% were flex-wing and 63% were fixed-wing in 2010

  • Average age at application 44 years old

  • Average time to complete just over two years

  • Average total time logged at application 56 hours 1 minute

  • Average solo time logged at application 13 hours 11 minutes

Age statistics

  • 17-20 year olds held the highest proportion of female applications at 9%

  • 17-20 year olds completed with the lowest average flight time

  • 60-70 year olds took on average 72 hours to complete training.

  • 40-50 year olds held the highest proportion of flex-wing applications.

  • Oldest student was 85yrs old.

  • Longest course of training recorded was 30 years

  • Most training completed before application was 315 hours 25 mins

  • 5.5% of applicants take more than 100 hours.


  • As of 12th February, instructors must write their CAA reference and sign on each entry in the student’s logbook.

Syllabus changes

  • There is a new syllabus for students who started after 1st Jan, as previously noted.

  • 1 in 60 rule removed.

  • If GPS is fitted to the aircraft, the student must be taught how to use it.


  • Poor decision making is the cause of 70% of accidents

  • No fatal accidents in microlights in 2018.

Are you a student pilot working towards your microlight licence? Take a look at our online ground school, audio courses and practice exams. Click here for more information.


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