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Clearance over London

Last night I was heading back to Elstree from the South and tried Heathrow Radar for a clearance over London.

Generally I’ve found it’s always been very easy and you’re 95% likely to get some sort of clearance.

Yesterday was a particularly good, no holding and vectored right between the Shard and the London eye at 1,500ft.

Hope you enjoy the pictures! (Sorry for the blurriness, they’re from a phone camera)

EGTR

Beautiful pics … I take it you have more than 1 motor

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

I take it you have more than 1 motor

Yes

EGTR

Wow! Great views

Alex
Shoreham (EGKA) White Waltham (EGLM)

DA62?

LDZA LDVA, Croatia

Nice – I’ve done a couple myself, but especially looking at FR24 I always wonder about the 1000 ft rule. I’ve mostly relied on "don’t do anything too stupid (like buzzing the tower), and no one will question your eyeball assessment of the 600m to obstable.

Nice !!

PS: over here you don’t need two engines for that; just sayin’……..

Sorry but I am unfamiliar with all this. Was it IFR or VFR ? Is it required to fly a twin to get such a transit ? How do they coordinate you with the helo traffic over the Thames river downtown (from my memories of being a touristique in London )

Many years ago the UK CAA has declared most of the London built-up area as not complying with the requirements of the Glide Clear Rule (sorry I don’t know where the applicable regs reside now) and while ATC can legally let you have an SVFR clearance (it is Class A or Class D) you are not legally capable of accepting that clearance in a SE aircraft.

The whole issue was more fuzzy until maybe 10 years ago, when I reckon ATC were quietly instructed to not issue the clearances. Today, you can have an SEP on a Eurocontrol IFR flight asking for a shortcut across London N-S at FL150 and I have never heard of anyone getting it, even though you can definitely glide clear. Until then, loads of SEPs used to fly up there, especially via the overhead of London City (this pic is best part of 20 years old; no SE pilot would dare publish a fresh one):

There was legal support for doing it because the area is full of water (the river and various lakes) which form adequate landing sites, in terms of protecting the public, even from 2400ft.


Eventually the CAA ruled that these bits of water don’t meet the requirements. I don’t know where this was left… the extra flying time to go all the way around London at the “obligatory” 2400ft (the CAS base is 2500ft) is of the order of 10 minutes and it isn’t worth the bother for most people.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

Today, you can have an SEP on a Eurocontrol IFR flight asking for a shortcut across London N-S at FL150 and I have never heard of anyone getting it,

There seem to be exceptions to the rule. I do remember well a flight a few years ago (2014?) direct over the City of London on our way from Jersey to Berlin at FL140.
I did not ask for a shortcut, it was just the filed route from autorouter.

Berlin, Germany
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