Remove the need for a GAR for private pilots flying from Northern Ireland to GB
During 'the troubles' in Northern Ireland it was decided that all private pilots who wished to fly from Northern Ireland to airfields in GB would have to notify the Police and HMRC by means of a GAR(General Aviation Report).
This requires a pilot to give a minimum of 12 hours notice and to predict where and when he/she intends to touch down in GB. The same applies in reverse and forms a barrier to those aerial tourists who may decide between a bureaucratic trip to Ulster or a freedome flight to the Scottish Isles.
The weather over the British Isles is decidedly unpredictable and opportunities to cross the Irish Sea appear and disappear almost as fast as the weather forecaster. Introducing a 12 hour administrative buffer prevents
Placing a legal requirement on the movement adds a level of stress to a pilot's freedome to decide on the safest route and will influence (in however small a way) the decision of wether to abort or re-route a flight. 'Pushing-on' in to bad weather has been the cause of many a fatal accident.
Where I to live in Glasgow, should a fine summer's morning appear out of the blue (sorry for the pun), I can hop in my plane and pop down to Blackpool for the day. This freedome is what attracts most of us to flying.
Under one of the more obscure elements of the Terrorism Act, because I live in what was the centre of terrorism in the latter end of the last centuary ….I am robbed of this freedome, and yet the pilot in Glasgow, who has no requirement to file a GAR, will be flying out of what was the site of the UK's worst airport attrocity.
May I recommend that qualified and licenced pilots are checked in the same way that teachers etc are certified for working with children. This could be added as some form of endorsement to a pilot's licence.
Why does this idea matter?
Equality of Freedome:
As citizens of the United Kingdome, I feel the private pilots of Northern Ireland should be entitled to the same freedomes to travel as those of the rest of Great Britain.
I feel that this legislation, which had a security purpose when first established, has not been updated to match the change in the security situation of Northern Ireland. Repealling this minor element of the Terrorism Act would show the people of Norther Ireland, of all persuations, that they are full and equal citizens of the United Kingdom and that the Government no longer assumes that residence of Northern Ireland equates to them being a potential terrorist anymore than their being from Manchester or London.
I feel that any legal directive that affects the safety of an en-route pilot by influencing (in however small a way) their decision to re-route for weather etc may one-day be a part of the decision chain that leads to a pilot's death.
The GAR can result in the attendance, at the departure or landing site, of the police and/or HMRC. This must be a considerable cost to the public purse and a one-time, pre-qualification process would surely make savings.