621 VGS Historic Flight
Historic Flight Fleet

Slingsby Sedbergh TX1 - WB922

The Sedbergh TX.1 or more affectionally known as "The Barge" must rank as one of the best and most loved of Slingsby’s gliders. This two seat, side by side trainer is robust and delightful to fly. For instructors it was a stable training machine as well as an excellent soaring aircraft.

Sedbergh WB922

WB922 was delivered to the RAF College Cranwell 13th June 1949. Spending time at various locations in particular 662 VGS (Arbroath) and 663 VGS (Aberdeen Airport) between 1965 and 1976, whilst in Scotland WB922 was used for the training and first solo of Prince Andrew whilst at Gordonstoun and has since become known as the "Royal Barge". Ending its service days with 615 VGS (Kenley) WB922 passed through a number of civilian hands before joining 621 VGS Historic Flight in February 2004.

Wingspan:16.5 meters Length:8.16 meters
Wing Area:260 sq ft Aspect Ratio:11.2
Empty Weight:272 Kg Maximum Weight:475 Kg
Max Speed (VNE):92 knots Glide Angle:1 in 21 at 37 knots

The History and Development of the Slingsby Cadet gliders.

The Slingsby T7 Kirby Cadet first flew in 1935. A simple single seat glider it was used by the Air Training Corps and known as the Cadet TX1, Slingsby produced a better performing wing to marry to the TX1 fuselage and this in turn became the Cadet TX2. With all training being carried out in single seat gliders it was soon decided that it was eminently sensible to have the instructor onboard the aircraft so the fuselage was lengthened and an additional cockpit added to produce the Cadet TX3.

Slingsby Cadet TX3 - XA310

The TX3 was the backbone of the wooden glider fleet, not suited to soaring it was perfect for "bashing the circuit" and trained many thousands of Air Cadets to solo standard.

Mk3 - XA310

XA310 is particularly special as it was delivered to 87 Gliding School Weston Super Mare on 18 March 1953. 87 GS became 621 Volunteer Gliding School where XA310 spent its entire service career so it is particularly fitting to be able to operate this airframe as part of the 621 VGS Historic Flight. Now owned by A P Stacey, XA310 is on long term loan and has been operated with the Flight since 2011.

Wingspan:13.2 meters Length:7.1 meters
Wing Area:170 sq ft Aspect Ratio:11.1
Empty Weight:388 Kg Maximum Weight:829 Kg
Max Speed (VNE):70 knots Glide Angle:1 in 18 at 39 knots

Slingsby Grasshopper TX1 - WZ828

The development of the Cadet TX1 to TX2 led to a surplus of Cadet TX1 wings, Slingsby designed a primary glider fuselage to fit these and designated it the Slingsby Grasshopper TX1 generally being used by the CCF sections at Public Schools. Originally designed to be hung from an A frame so that cadets could experience the effects of the controls, once proficient cadets were then launched by bungee cord on either a ground slide or low hop.

Primary WZ828

WZ828 was initially delivered to St Peters School Exeter on 30 December 1952 where it remained for its service career. It has been operated by 621 VGS Historic Flight since 2007 and is now launched by winch or aerotow. Initially never fitted with an Air Speed Indicator this was introduced as a safety feature to aid with winch / aerotow launching, circuit and landing speeds.

Wingspan:11.9 meters Length:6.3 meters
Empty Weight:130 Kg Maximum Weight:249 Kg
Max Speed (VNE):70 knots Glide Angle:1 in 7 at 29 knots

Slingsby Prefect TX1 - WE992

In 1948, Slingsby Sailplanes developed the 1932 Grunau Baby, which it had built under licence before World War II, into the Slingsby T.30 Prefect, an intermediate-level semi-aerobatic glider suitable for civil or military use.

Prefect WE992

Owned by A P Stacey, WE992 is on long term loan and has been operated with the Flight since 2011.

Slingsby Swallow TX1 - XS651

The Swallow flew for the first time on 11 October 1957 and it remained in production for 11 years. The Air Cadets only had five.

Swallow XS651

After A P Stacey restored this glider to flying condition in 2011, he gifted it to the Historic Flight.

Slingsby Venture T2 - ZA656

During May 1971 a Slingsby licensed built version of the Scheibe SF25B known as the Venture T1 was evaluated by the Royal Air Force to introduce motor gliding to the Air Training Corps. Re-engined with a VW based Rollason Ardem, a widened cockpit and glass fibre main spar it entered service as the Venture T2, initially with a rope pull start and then modified for electric start.

Venture ZA656

ZA656 was first delivered on 13 October 1980, spending time at 624 VGS (Chivenor), RAF Benson and 613 VGS Halton. It was sold in 1991 to the RAF Gliding and Soaring Association, re-registered G-BTWC and based at Upavon and Wattisham. Purchased by the 621 Venture syndicate in June 2014 it is now operated alongside the Historic Flight having been returned to its military colour scheme.

Wingspan:15.3 meters Length:7.6 meters
Empty Weight:399 Kg Maximum Weight:612 Kg
Max Speed (VNE):99 knots Glide Angle:1 in 22