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Communications & Coley Hill

A question that is often aired is that of the mobile (and other) communication towers that are springing up everywhere. Some say that they are a convenient excuse for claiming radio interference when we crash. On the other hand, should we switch off our mobile phones when we're down at the flying site?

We received this e-mail from Jon Hill regarding flying from Coley Hill near Reigate. If you have any information both we and Jon would like to hear from you. Jon would also like to know what had happen to the regular Coley Hill flyers. Has the proximity of the M25 and the 'comms' tower put people off flying from Coley Hill?

We at 'Flying Sites' have learnt that the Elmbridge Model Club ( have, according to their web site, access to Coley Hill, but perhaps you can offer Jon more help. He writes:

About twenty years ago I used to spend many an enjoyable time soaring at my local slope. It was picturesque, high and steep with a clean approach and no trees you'd call a problem but most of all it was quiet.

Then as life began to change I remember one of my last visits was to the awful site & sound of bulldozers clearing the woods behind 'my' hill for the M25! I returned to the site a week or so ago to find no Foot & Mouth restrictions in place, it enjoying a light south-westerly, a little low cloud and cold...definitely flyable...but no one was there.

Two things I did notice, the incessant roar of that damn motorway just a couple of hundred yards back from the ridge and 100 yards back the high brick water tower is now bristling with aerials and dishes.

Where am I... On National Trust Land at Colley Hill, Margery Wood, on the south side of the North Downs in Surrey overlooking Reigate. A large bowl suitable for south-westerlies to south-easterlies. Do R/C slope soarers still fly at this site because lots once did? Would the close proximity of the telecommunications aerials have an adverse effect on modern R/C equipment?

I am considering returning to soaring but do not wish to have to travel long distances, currently 20 minutes to Colley Hill, so obviously I'm interested if my old hill is still open for business...???

Jon can be e-mailed by clicking here.

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