Sir Peter Rigby joins Coventry Aeroplane Club to celebrate 80 years in the air

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ONE of the country’s oldest flying clubs has just celebrated its 80th anniversary.

New recruits joined in open day celebrations at Coventry Aeroplane Club, which included free flights for visitors.

Twenty of the 350 people who visited its clubhouse at Coventry Airport last Saturday and Sunday booked trial lessons and four signed up to begin training for a pilots’ licence. Another 120 enjoyed free flights courtesy club members.

Sir Peter Rigby, the airport’s owner, cut a cake to mark the anniversary of the club which formed in 1932 and currently has 185 members while £1,000 was raised for charity. There was also a flight simulator there for the day.

Mike Nicholson, a committee member, said: “It was a very successful day, the weather certainly helped.

“We would like to thank everybody who attended.”

One of the oldest flying clubs in the UK marked its 80th year with 80 free flights - which were distributed randomly among guests. Everyone interested in piloting light aircraft can find out more from

Paul Ingram is pictured enjoying the 80th birthday celebrations during the open weekend.