Autogyro pilots set for world record attempt at Shuttleworth Collection’s Old Warden base near Biggleswade

Steve Paffett in his AutoGyro. Picture: Danny Loo

Steve Paffett in his AutoGyro. Picture: Danny Loo - Credit: Archant

There is quite a spectacle at the Shuttleworth Collection’s Old Warden home tomorrow – between 30 and 50 autogyros are taking to the skies in the first world record attempt of its kind.

Steve Paffett with his autogyro. Picture: Danny Loo

Steve Paffett with his autogyro. Picture: Danny Loo - Credit: Archant

The British Rotorcraft Association is planning to host a record attempt of the most autogyros ever to fly in to one UK airfield in a single day.

Co-ordinator Steve Paffett told the Comet: “It will be quite something – we have people flying in from as far afield as Scotland to take part.

“The former patron of the association was wing commander Ken Wallis who designed, built and flew the Little Nellie gyro in You Only Live Twice.

David Taylor in his autogyro, as captured by Comet photographer Danny Loo during his own flying expe

David Taylor in his autogyro, as captured by Comet photographer Danny Loo during his own flying experience. - Credit: Archant

“He inspired so many to want to fly these fascinating aircraft, and of course his aircraft is on loan to the Shuttleworth Collection for the foreseeable future.”


You may also want to watch:


A big part of Steve’s role is taking people up in the aircraft as well as being events co-ordinator, treasurer and membership secretary for the British Rotorcraft Association.

It’s all the more impressive as Steve hadn’t set foot in a gyros until 2010 – and is scared of heights.

David Taylor in his AutoGyro. Picture: Danny Loo

David Taylor in his AutoGyro. Picture: Danny Loo - Credit: Archant

Most Read

Steve said: “I got into this flying model aircraft, and wanted to go in a helicopter but I was too scared of flying and heights to ever give it a go.

“Then a pilot told me about the autogyros – which was somewhere between the two and one of the safest aircraft you can go on. My wife bought me a half hour experience in one and I was hooked.

“Now I must’ve done 1,400 flights, including going to France, and I’ve taken more than 100 people up in the air. I ask for donations to the Garden House Hospice or the Alzheimer’s Society.

“It will be a great event on Friday for anyone to come along to – how often do you see one autogyro in the air? I remember the first time I saw one and was amazed, so to see at least 30 in the air will be awesome.”

The world record attempt will start from 9am onwards, and organisers expect everyone to be up by about lunchtime.

Following on from the record attempt will be the de Havilland Moth Club Charity Flying Weekend at Shuttleworth this Saturday and Sunday, before an evening air show is held on Saturday, June 17.

For more see shuttleworth.org/whats-on. For Steve’s fundraising page go to justgiving.com/fundraising/Stephen-Paffett1

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus