Powered Hang Gliding History

London to Paris

The power unit Len Gabriels designed and built for his Skyhooks gliders. This particular one was used during his flight from London to Paris on 27th August 1979

It was organised by Brian Milton (who later flew a more advanced microlight around the world).
Permission was given by the CAA for the flight within UK airspace. Whilst permission could not be arranged for French airspace, we were assured that the French being very air minded, would be happy to assist. How mistaken we were. The take-off point was a field near Potters Bar. A landing was made near Dover to rendezvous with a BBC helicopter and for re-fuelling. After taking off  again the channel was crossed in about 45 minutes whilst climbing to about 5000ft. All went well until after landing at  Le Touquet airport, when permission to fly on was refused. 
(This was the day that Lord Mountbatten was murdered in Ireland, so there was no publicity).
Permission to fly on was given on the next day but after landing at Camps en Amienois  (65 miles from Paris) for re-fuelling, the gendarmes arrived with instructions to end the flight. So we did not get to Paris but did manage a flight of over 200 miles.


Photos and article taken from Len Gabriels personal website


Bluebird flying over London 27th August 1979


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