General Flying Rules – All Sites
Updated February 2022.
Only Class 1 flyers will be permitted to fly without supervision (i.e. no flying shall take place unless a Class 1 flyer is on the field). The test that you are required to pass in order to gain a Class 1 status is either an internal TRF test based upon the BMFA “A” certificate or the standard BMFA “A” certificate appropriate to the type of model(s) you fly. (The TRF internal test has historically been performed by two registered Club Instructors. The ”A” certificate is examined by a BMFA registered Club Examiner). The BMFA ”A” certificate is the preferred option but is dependent on the availability of registered Club Examiners. Details of the “A” tests are contained in the BMFA handbook or can be found on their website at: www.bmfa.org
Any Member whose flying standard falls below the minimum requirement solo standard will be required to rejoin the training scheme until the desired standard of flying is met.
The Committee and Instructors will be responsible for running the flying field. If none are present then the first Class 1 flyer to arrive will take charge and must pass on the responsibility to another Class 1 flyer when he leaves if no Committee member or Instructor has arrived.
The following rules regarding frequency boards do not apply at both sites to members operating on 2.4GHz. All flyers should own a frequency board with their name and transmitter (Tx) frequency showing. The first flyer to arrive will set up a control compound. If flying on 27 or 35MHz at the Tonbridge power site all flyers should place their transmitters and boards in the compound when they arrive, displayed in a line of ascending order of Tx frequency with the board under the Tx. When the member intends to fly, the board must be displayed in the upright position and then the Tx may be removed for use, PROVIDED that no other Tx on the same frequency is in use. After the flight is over, replace the Tx in the compound with the board again under the Tx, thereby showing that the frequency is free, (see Leigh Park Farm rules for special arrangements there for setting up the TX compound and for Tx usage). .
Flyers shall ensure that they have a pennant on their Tx aerial clearly showing the frequency they are using, unless operating on 2.4GHz.
All members should comply with the BMFA guidelines and safety codes, as detailed in the BMFA handbook and the relevant flying site rulebook. Any persistently dangerous flying may render the flyer liable to a severe reprimand, or even expulsion from the club.
All models must be under control, i.e. Radio Control, Control Line, etc.
A parent or a responsible adult chosen by the parent must be present when children and/or junior members are present at the flying sites.
No litter shall be left at any club flying site.
Pets are not allowed at any club flying site. Members of the public and visitors must be asked to keep dogs on leads.
The above rules are to be read in conjunction with the Club’s constitution. For more detailed information please refer to the constitution which can be seen in full below.
The BMFA is the National governing body for the sport of model flying in Great Britain.
The club insists that all members belong to the BMFA, mainly to ensure that all members are covered by insurance.
For more information please visit the BMFA Web Site, the link can be found on the links page.
Tonbridge Radio Flyers is affiliated to the BMFA as a club and is club number 0253.
BMFA Membership provides members with Civil Liability Insurance; a summary of the cover provided is as follows. It is important to note that this is only a draft summary and cannot be taken as a definition of the actual cover offered or provided;
Members should carefully read all original documentation provided by the BMFA.
SYNOPSIS OF COVER Covers the Association (BMFA), its Executives, Officials, Clubs and Registered Members in respect of Civil Liability in respect of claims arising out of the recognised/authorised activities of the BMFA, up to the Limit of Indemnity of £25,000,000.
The cover includes:
- a) Public Liability
- b) Products Liability
- c) Member to Member Liability
- d) Liability for damage to Leased or Rented Premises
- e) Voluntary Helpers engaged by the insured in connection with their activities.
f). Personal Accident Insurance.
Silent Flight at Leigh Park farm
Leigh Park Farm is situated to the North West of Leigh village in Coppings road TN11 8PN
We treat this field as a silent flight site – Gliders and Electric powered models. Our use of this site extends throughout the year
Flying Rules for Leigh Park Farm (Silent Flight)
Flying at Leigh Park Farm is permitted on Sundays from 10am to 5pm, on Saturdays from 1pm to 6pm (12 noon to dusk in the Winter), on Wednesdays from 10am to 2pm and on Thursdays from 2pm until dusk. Also from 10am to 5pm on Bank Holidays. Guest flyers are allowed with prior permission from a committee member. They will pay a day membership fee and must prove that they have BMFA membership.
Parking is only permitted in the lay-bys, or on the borders of the field being used. The concrete roadway must NEVER be obstructed in any way because of the large lorries using it frequently.
Flying will take place usually in the large area adjoining the old oak tree, near the oast, but when the farmer is grazing cattle there, use the area adjoining the tree line. If both areas are occupied by cattle, use the field on the other side of the farm road but take care to avoid the power lines.
The rules as laid out in ‘Club Details’ and ‘The Constitution’ will apply to Leigh Park Farm except for setting up the control compound, for which 6 below is substituted.
Please note that 2.4GHz flyers are not required to display frequency boards prior to flying.
The first flyer to arrive at the site will set up a frequency control area by placing his or her frequency board in a suitable place adjoining the cars, so that it is visible to any subsequent arrivals. After placing these boards in ascending order of Tx frequency, flyers can take their transmitters with them to the flight line together with their models. It is essential, where there is more than one person on the same frequency, that they liaise together so that only one of them has their Tx on at any one time. If it becomes necessary for anyone on the flight line to change frequency, his or her board in the control compound must be changed immediately. The models and transmitters should be placed in a compound situated behind and in line with the launch point. Spectators and all persons not actually flying their models should remain in this compound until they leave the site..
When ready to launch and after checking that the airspace above and behind is clear and no one else is about to launch, pilots should call out clearly ‘Launching’. If more than one model is in the air, the pilots should stand as close together as is practicable, in order to reduce the effects of adjacent channel interference.
The areas for landing are situated on both sides of the launch area. Landings must always be carried out INTO WIND, unless an emergency dictates otherwise.
Whenever possible, a clear cut rectangular approach pattern should be adhered to comprising initially joining the circuit on the downwind leg, completion of the downwind led, turning crosswind and then turning into wind for the final approach and landing. When on the crosswind leg, pilots should call out clearly, ‘Landing’. Models should be retrieved from the landing area quickly, after ensuring that there are no other models on a landing approach.
If at any time during flight, difficulties are encountered, clear audible warning should be given to other members and spectators on the field.
The field is sometimes used by microlite operators and the following precautions should be taken at all times:-
Whenever possible, the launching and landing of models should take place in the part of the field not being used by the microlites. However if the wind direction is such that it is necessary to lay a bungee across the part of the field used by the microlites, the microlite operators should be informed, so that they may be aware of the bungee position, on the takeoff and landing run.
Models should not be launched if a microlite is taxiing out or taking off and should only be released when the microlite is well clear of the launch area.
Always ensure that your approach circuit is carried out on the opposite side of to field to the microlite area and keep a careful look out for microlites approaching to land when you are on your base leg and final approach, taking avoiding action as necessary.
When flying, aim to keep a good angular separation between your model and the microlite and do not forget that your depth perception can often be very poor at the distances concerned.
Avoid flying in the critical airspace associated with the designated microlite takeoff and landing areas.
Avoid your model being shielded from your vision by a microlite.
If a collision becomes likely, the much better agility of your model, compared to the microlite means that your role will probably be the more significant one in avoiding action. It is not possible to give hard and fast collision avoidance procedure, but to minimise the effects of depth perceptions and orientation, ‘up’ and ‘down’ manoeuvres by the mode! are likely to be the, most sensible action. Remember that a microlite operator will probably not be able to see a mode! when it is above or behind him.
Wherever possible, no models should be flown directly over the farm house or farm buildings.
Club flying will be allowed on Tonbridge Radio Flyers members only competition days, in agreement with the competition organiser on the day. There will be no club flying during Open competitions.
Due to an I/C power club being situated approximately 1.4 miles from LPF, we have an arrangement with them that they fly on odd numbered frequencies and at our field we use even numbered frequencies only.
The Tonbridge Flying Site (Power)
The flying field is situated on the south side of Tonbridge, just off the A21.
Flying Rules for Tonbridge (power)
We are able to fly power models at this site from 10am until 2pm on Sundays, plus 10am to 4pm on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
In addition silent flight with small electric models is allowed on all days from 10am until dusk. All models must comply with sound level limits (measured at 7 metres) of no greater than 82 dB. Silent flight activity will be restricted to the area surrounding the strip in order to avoid any possibility of becoming obtrusive to neighbours.
A class 1 flyer is a member who has passed the BMFA ‘A’.certificate of the radio control achievement scheme in the type of aircraft they fly. i.e. fixed wing or helicopter. If a member joins the club with an ‘A’ certificate then they will fly with a club examiner or instructor to show their standard of flying before going solo. All Student Flyers must only fly on a buddy system until an instructor says they are ready to take the ‘A’ test. They may then fly without buddy control in preparation for taking the test.
Lone flying can only be undertaken by members who hold a BMFA A certificate using silent flight only.
Guest flyers are allowed with prior permission from a committee member. They will pay a day membership fee and must prove they have BMFA membership. To fly solo they must have a BMFA ‘A’ certificate and prove their standard of flying as in 3.
Access to the field is by a locked gate; non-members should therefore make prior arrangements if they wish to visit the site.
No members are to fly or run engines without an efficient silencer. All aircraft will be tested for sound level before flying for the first time. The maximum permitted sound level is 82db as measured in accordance with the methods detailed in the BMFA handbook. Any changes, i.e. engine or propeller size, mean that the test must be retaken.
The running and flying of gas turbines is not permitted.
Fail-safe’s, where fitted, on I/C and electric fixed wing must be proved to a club examiner, instructor or committee member , to put the throttle to idle or stop in the case of electric, before flying for the first time.
Mobile phones shall not be taken on to the flight line and should be left in your car if parked nearby or model box if winter parking arrangements apply.
Any glider launch point must be agreed with the power flyers, if present.
Pilots must stand together in the designated areas and no more than 3 powered fixed wing aircraft to fly at any one time.
Helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft must not fly on the main runway at the same time.
Only one helicopter on the main runway and one on the hovering patch at the same time.
On Gun club dates when the Gun Club are operating, we are permitted to fly as long as flyers give a wide berth, flying will only be allowed at the discretion of the safety officer or in his absence, a responsible A class pilot.
If you arrive at the site on any other date and there are more than 3 cars parked at the Gun Club, you must enquire as to whether an additional shoot has been organised and check with them whether it is OK to fly or not. Please remember that their decision is final.
TONBRIDGE RADIO FLYERS CONSTITUTION
The Club is called Tonbridge Radio Flyers. (TRF)
The objects of the Club are the promotion and encouragement of building and flying radio-controlled model aircraft.
The Club shall be a non-profit making association and may make no distributions of any surplus of income over expenditure among its members as bonus, dividend or profit and shall devote any such surplus to financing activities arising from the Club’s objects.
The Club shall have three classes of membership:
Dual Site Senior, Dual Site Junior, Dual Site Family
Junior members are members under the age of eighteen. Dual Site Senior and Dual Site Junior members are permitted to fly at all Club sites. At the power site the agreed disciplines must be flown on the days as above in 1.
All members must be a member of the British Model Flying Association (BMFA)
The Committee has the right to refuse membership to new applicants.
New members will be required to serve an initial probationary period of 6 months. During this time they will not be eligible to serve on the Committee and may have their membership terminated at the discretion of the Committee for unsatisfactory conduct.
Upon payment of the joining fee and first subscription the new member agrees to be bound by the Club‘s Constitution and rules.
Priority will be given to applicants residing permanently within a ten-mile radius of Tonbridge castle. Membership shall be restricted to a maximum of 100.
The Committee can nominate a member for Special Lifetime Membership for exceptional service to the Club which has to be confirmed by a vote at an AGM. This Membership is exempt from Club membership subscription.
Membership of the Club may be terminated by written notice to the secretary by the member of their decision to leave.
The Committee shall have the power of removal from the role of member any member whose conduct on the field or elsewhere is considered to be prejudicial to the Club. Dismissal will be in accordance with the following procedure:
The member is given a verbal warning by an authorised Committee member in which the member is made aware of his misdemeanour and what he is reasonably required to do to make amends.
If the member does not respond, he is to be given a written warning by an authorised Committee member to advise him of his misdemeanour and what he is reasonably required to do to make amends.
If he still fails to respond, the Committee should invite him in writing to meet with them at a previously agreed date and time to discuss the situation, advising that they are considering withdrawal of his membership.
If he still fails to respond to reason or fails to attend without reasonable cause, the Committee can advise him in writing that his membership is withdrawn, stating the reasons why this decision was reached.
When the member is advised of withdrawal of his membership, he must be given the right of appeal. If he opts to appeal, this will be to the Club membership at an EGM which the Committee will call on his behalf at a previously agreed date and time. The motion to uphold the membership withdrawal or reverse it must be in accordance with the voting procedures set out in the Club Constitution.
In the event of gross misconduct, immediate dismissal without warnings may be considered but the member must still be accorded his rights to present his case to the Committee and given a right of appeal in accordance with sub-paragraphs c, d and e above.
In event of dismissal the Committee will arrange for the member’s current membership fee to be reimbursed in full.
A membership subscription shall be payable by each member and the amount of the subscription shall be decided by vote at a general meeting of the club.
Each person shall become liable for annual payment of the subscription upon acceptance as a member of the Club and shall cease only upon formal termination of his membership, as provided in the constitution.
Subscriptions are due by 1st January each year. Any member who has not paid the subscriptions for the ensuing year by this date will not be allowed to fly until they have done so. BMFA membership must be in place before flying
If any member fails to pay his annual subscription on or before the 31st January the Committee shall declare his membership terminated.
Notice of default may be given to the member after this date but the Club shall not be obliged to do so.
The affairs of the Club shall be administered by a Committee consisting of the six officers of the Club.
All the Committee members shall be elected by vote at the annual general meeting of the Club and shall retire automatically at the following annual general meeting, but shall be eligible for re-election.
Although the Committee is exempt from paying Club membership subscription, this in no way implies that they are employed by the Club and they are not able to claim payment for any time spent on Club duties. The only payment to Committee members will be for actual financial expenses incurred over the course of the year for which a full account and receipts must be submitted to the Treasurer at least two weeks before the AGM.
The Committee shall be responsible for carrying out the policies and actions decided at general meetings, but may make and implement decisions in matters not so determined, provided that such decisions do not nullify or contravene any such policies and actions.
The Committee may co-opt members of the Club to serve on the Committee or to form a sub-committee:
To fill a vacancy among its members occurring between annual general meetings.
To carry out special duties or relieve excessive work by any Committee members.
The co-opted member shall not be entitled to vote on the Committee
The officers of the Club shall be Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, Secretary (silent flight section) and Safety Officers.
The duties of the officers of the Club are:
To preside at general and committee meetings and conduct them in an orderly manner.
To ensure that the affairs of the Club are conducted within the terms of the constitution.
To be the final authority on the interpretation of the terms of the constitution.
To keep minutes of meetings
To keep an up-to-date list of names and addresses of all members.
To send out notices of meetings as prescribed in the constitution.
To keep safely documents and properties of the club entrusted to him for that purpose.
To be responsible for controlling the content accuracy and currency of the information placed on the Club website.
To deposit in a bank account in the name of the club all monies and other securities and negotiable instruments entrusted to him by the club.
To keep proper books of account which reveal the details of all income and expenditure.
To submit a report on the finances of the club at each committee meeting, made up to end of the month preceding such meeting.
To submit to the Annual General Meeting of the club a full audited Income and Expenditure Account and Balance Sheet for the year preceding such meeting and a budget for estimated financial needs of the succeeding year.
Secretary (silent flight section)
To organise and supervise competitions held at Leigh Park Farm.
To record all competition results from internal and external competitions then update league tables after each competition and make these available to silent flight members.
To liaise with Colin Bastable at Leigh Park Farm as necessary regarding rent and competitions.
To ensure that the club has appropriate rules to ensure that it operates in accordance with British Model Flying Association (BMFA) safety Guidelines and Codes and the requirements of CAP 722 and the BMFA’s Article 16 Authorisation as laid out in the BMFA hand book.
Together with the other members of the Committee, Club examiners and instructors, who will act as Assistant Safety Officers and report to the designated Safety Officer as required, to ensure that flying is carried out in accordance with the Clubs rules.
To give advice to the Committee on safety related issues.
To be responsible for keeping records of sound level meter readings.
Nominations for Officers and Committee members for the ensuing year shall be submitted, in writing and signed by the nominator, to the Secretary not later than twenty-one days prior to the Annual General Meeting.
In the event of no prior nominations being made for any Officer or vacancy on the committee, nominations made at the meeting to elect such Officers and Committee members shall be valid.
In the event of a person who was co-opted on to the Committee being submitted for formal election between Annual General Meetings, a majority vote by postal ballot shall be valid appointment to Committee membership.
The nominators shall be responsible for determining that the nominee is willing to act in the capacity proposed.
The committee may appoint a member to the role of Groundsman (who, for the avoidance of doubt, is not a member of the committee).
The Groundsman role is to regularly cut the grass at the power site during the growing season in accordance with the requirements of the license with the landowner of the site.
In recognition of the onerous workload this role entails the Groundsman is exempt from paying the Club membership subscription. However, this in no way implies that they are employed by the Club and they are not able to claim payment for any time spent on Club duties. The only payment to the Groundsman will be for actual financial expenses incurred over the course of the year for which a full account and receipts must be submitted to the Treasurer at least two weeks before the AGM.
The Annual General Meeting of the Club shall take place each year not earlier than 11 months and not later than 13 months from the previous Annual General Meeting. The Secretary shall circularise all members with the Agenda, time, date and place of the Meeting not less than fourteen days prior to the Meeting.
Extraordinary General Meetings of the Club may be called either by the Committee or by request of not less than 20% (twenty per cent) of the voting members of the Club. The Secretary shall circularise all members with the Agenda, time, date and place of any such Meeting within fourteen days of receipt of such request and not later than fourteen days prior to the date of the Meeting.
Both the Annual General Meeting and Extraordinary General Meetings of the Club may take place either by a physical meeting of the members or by a virtual online meeting of the members via Zoom or similar manner.
Auditors for the ensuing year shall be appointed at the Annual General Meeting to audit the financial accounts.
The quora for a General Meeting shall be (except as otherwise provided herein):-
At an Annual General Meeting not less than one fifth of the current voting membership; and
At Extraordinary General Meetings, not less than one fifth of the current voting membership, provided that, where a member not present at a General Meeting has written to the Secretary prior to the Meeting giving his vote on an item on the Agenda, he shall count as present for that item and the Meeting may proceed validly on any items for which a quorum is so completed.
A voting member shall be a Member of the Club who has, at the date of the Meeting, paid all subscriptions and dues for which he is liable.
Failure to qualify as a voting member shall not in itself debar a member from attending General Meetings, nor from participating in debates on motions, but shall debar him from voting.
All proposals must be seconded and voted on.
Voting may be by a show of hands or by ballot.
Each voting member may exercise one valid vote on each motion.
No person shall vote on behalf of a voting member except for the Club secretary who may present a signed proxy vote on behalf of an absent member.
The Chairman shall count votes and declare a motion carried or rejected according to the majority vote. He may appoint at least two scrutineers to count votes.
The Property and Funds of the Club shall be vested in the Committee for the time being.
The Funds of the Club shall be deposited in a Bank in the Club’s name and cheques and negotiable instruments shall be signed on behalf of the Club by either of the two Officers of the Club named on the Banker’s Mandate.
All other legal documents shall be signed on behalf of the Club by any two Officers of the Club.
In the event of the dissolution of the Club, all assets of the Club of whatever form may be disposed of by the Committee. After paying all outstanding debts, any surplus shall be donated to a Corporate body with similar objects.
Dissolution of the Club shall be decided only by a two thirds majority of the voting members of the Club present at a Meeting convened specifically for the purpose.
Valid postal votes shall be counted.
Notice of the proposal to dissolve the Club shall be sent to each member of the Club by post three weeks prior to the date of the Meeting addressed to the last address notified to the Secretary. Upon passing of the resolution, all assets of the Club shall be surrendered to the Committee for the time being for disposal in accordance with the provisions in the Constitution.
Change of Rules
Amendment, repeal or addition to the Rules contained in this Constitution shall be by resolution passed at Meetings convened specifically for the purpose or at Annual General Meetings and by agreement of not less than two-thirds of the voting members present. Valid postal votes shall be counted.
Details of proposed alteration shall be published to each member with the Notice of the Meeting at least fourteen days prior to the Meeting.
Limitation of Liability
No member may commit the Club to any financial obligation without written authority from the Committee, signed in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution. Any such unauthorized commitments made shall be the personal liability of the member who made it and no claim upon the Club in respect of such a commitment shall be accepted.