Bristol's Brexit-proof exams; Air France's pilot training
Bristol Groundschool has announced a solution for professional pilot licence students taking EASA theory exams with the CAA that safeguards against a Brexit ‘no deal’.
Director Rod Wren explains: “The EASA regulations allow pilots to complete their professional exams with any EASA Member State – even if they want their licence issued by another State. However, all fourteen professional exams must be taken with the same State. As it is usual to split the exams into two or three separate sittings, there is a danger that candidates will complete some exams with the CAA, currently an EASA exam authority, but EASA has announced that it will not recognise those exams if the UK ceases to be an EASA Member state. This could be disastrous for our customers undertaking their professional studies. Fortunately, we have a great solution to this problem.”
That solution is an agreement with Austro Control – Austria’s equivalent of the CAA – to open an exam centre at the Bristol Groundschool’s training centre at Clevedon, near Bristol in the UK. Exams taken with Austro Control will be recognised by all EASA regulatory authorities for issue of an EASA professional pilot licence. In the event that the UK leaves EASA and starts issuing its own professional pilot licenses, the CAA will recognise EASA examinations, and will protect the candidate whatever the outcome of Brexit negotiations.
“The other great news is the cost of each exam taken with Austro Control is only €39.60 compared to £71 for a UK CAA examination,” says Rod Wren, “so if the UK remains an EASA member state there is no downside to individuals switching to take their exams with Austro Control and obviously a significant cost saving.”
Bristol Groundschool’s owner and manager Director Alex Whittingham adds: “Austro Control have been great to work with and focussed on the needs of the candidates. This solution removes uncertainty and will allow our students to concentrate on their studies, safe in the knowledge that they will be able to apply for a licence whatever happens in the Brexit negotiations. The exam questions are the same as the ones the CAA uses, and from the same question bank, with the results issued directly after each exam. The exams will be taken on ipads.”
The first scheduled dates for exams at Bristol Groundschool are 20-23 November and 3-6 December. Candidates who have already booked their exams with the CAA may cancel those bookings and get a full refund if it is at least seven days before the exams are due to take place. For further information please visit: bristol.gs