Ode to Panshanger

It's just another airfield
There's plenty more around
Why should we be bothered
Living on the ground

I've known this place for twenty years
Some people many more
This pleasant, friendly airfield
With us since the War

But when it's gone, lost to us
Deserted, quiet, still
No longer home to aircraft
No sign of pilots skill

No place to keep our pride and joy
No fuel to let us fly
No restaurant to feed our soul
No access to the sky

Our children will not come here
To learn the joy of flight
To slacken off the Earthly Bonds
To gaze down from a height

To swoop and loop and roll and turn
To sharpen up their skill
To learn to fly an aeroplane
Perhaps they never will

To frolic up among the clouds
To venture far and wide
To come back home to this green field
To put their cares aside

Panshanger, the airfield
Has been good for me
The school, the fuel, the restaurant
The camaraderie

But when it's gone, it's lost to us
For others have decreed
It shall close and be no more
The reason, human greed

It's just another airfield
But it means much more to me
When it's gone we all lose out
Why not let it be?


‘ode’ written by David Broom



Dear Sir or Madame,

            I felt compelled to write to you today after hearing about the closure of Panshanger Aerodrome. I am deeply saddened to hear about this news and decided to tell you how this decision affects individuals like myself. I have always dreamt of becoming a commercial airline pilot and during 2011 I had completed my work experience at North London Flying School thanks to the permission of Sue (Flying school Co-owner). The experience had taught me many things about both flying and social skills. Towards the end of the week I was offered a place in the flight exchange programme which offers the rare opportunity for students to work in the cafe in exchange for flying lessons. To this day I have been travelling the 45 minute car journey every week and have been working in the cafe, earning my own lessons to achieve my PPL (private pilots license). If the flying school were to be shut down, both I and others like myself will lose this fantastic opportunity to get a head start in becoming a pilot. The flying school allows young people to decide if aviation really is the career they want to be in and supports them along the way unlike any other flying school. Even further, It allows young people to have a focus and work towards something rather than being at home or on the streets. Overall, If I were to compare myself now to myself before the work experience and flight exchange programme I would see a huge increase in confidence and I am now able to talk to anyone about anything thanks to the support from the community at the flying school. Families as well as young people visit the flying school for days out, and the regular events at the flying school such as "Revival day" attracts large numbers of visitors which boosts the popularity of Panshanger as a whole. The entire flying school community have evolved to become a family and the shutting down of the aerodrome will be like splitting up a family, is this the future for Panshanger? I deeply hope you take this into consideration and I thank you for taking your time to read this.

 Yours faithfully
 Imran Mehmet