Crossing one of the busiest sections of UK airspace in a light aircraft can appear a daunting prospect, but in practice it’s not as difficult as it might seem. On this trip through London Gatwick’s Class D controlled airspace I had an expert in the cockpit with me – an air traffic controller who works in the tower at the airport.
For pilots to be able to carry passengers at night, they must have a night rating, and have performed one take off and landing at night in the previous 90 days. Through the summer, it becomes difficult to maintain that currency, but now that the nights have started drawing in, I was able to take a short local flight in the dark, and have made this video of the trip. Flying at night is completely different from a daytime trip. If you’re VFR, then you’ll find you’ll have to adapt to the different way towns, roads, cities and landmarks