Cleared for take-off... new flights for would-be pilots
HAVE you ever fancied flying a plane?
How would you like to take control of a Boeing 737 as it cruises over the Alps, or the skyscrapers of Hong Kong?
Well, now you can. A new flight simulator has been set up on the top floor of the Cornerhouse. It is the kind used for training pilots.
It has been installed by a firm called SimSpot, which has enlisted the help of qualified pilots Jay van Wyk, Darren Wheeler and Mark Onyett.
One of them will brief users before they sit in the mock cockpit, designed exactly to real-life standards.
It is then down to them to get the plane airborne and fly it to one of 24,000 airports worldwide.
Mark Wright, co-owner of SimSpot, said: "Simulators of this quality are usually found in fairly remote areas, often close to airfields and airports.
"It's actually quite rare to find one in an inner-city location but The Cornerhouse is the perfect base for us."
Mr Wright said the simulator was open to individuals and small groups and companies wanting to train commercial pilots.
Work is still being carried out to the third-floor unit, with plans for the waiting area to be turned into a departure lounge, as well as adding a first-class lounge.
From there, people can enter the cockpit, where there is room for two pilots.
Every dial, button, switch and instrument is fully functional, just like in a real aircraft.
The simulator is controlled from an instructor station where variations can be made to factors such as the weather, position, time of day, fuel loads, repositioning and approaches.
It can also simulate faults such as engine failures and hydraulic problems.
Mr Wheeler added: "This is the kind of simulator used to train pilots, though it wouldn't count towards flying hours.
"It gives people a unique chance to fly a plane."
Flights start at £49 for half an hour. For more details see www.simspot.co.uk