Tag Archives: Skydiving

10,000ft Skydive By World War 2 Veteran

skydiving On a number of occasions, we have reported on various skydiving jumps that we feel may be of interest to many of you who are involved in this exiting sport. This latest jump involves a World War 2 veteran who has not parachuted for 74 years until a few days ago.

The gentleman in question is called Harry Read and he is a mere 94 years of age. At the age of 20, on the 6th June 1944, he landed in Normandy by parachute whilst working as a wireless operator. In those days, parachutists left using their parachutes until they were as close to the ground as they could safely get presumably to help avoid detection by the enemy. Apparently, back then it only took in the region of 30 seconds from jumping out of the plane to landing on the ground.

Mr Read made the jump a few days ago at the Old Sarum Airfield near Salisbury in Wiltshire in tandem with the Chief Instructor by the name of Ryan Mancey. He had been given a clean bill of health by his doctor. On this occasion, you will be pleased to read that he was raising money for the Salvation Army’s Anti Trafficking and Modern Slavery section. He has been a member of the Salvation Army for many, many years and was awarded the Chevalier in 2016 with this being the highest honour in France.

He certainly is a brave chap and, next year, to celebrate a 75th anniversary, he hopes to do another skydive.

Supporters at the jump included his grand daughters and great grandson so it was very much a family occasion.

Those of you who have skydived will no doubt appreciate how brave Mr Read was to complete such a jump especially at his time of life. There cannot be many people in their 90’s who have skydived from 10,000ft. We will keep you advised of any other interesting jumps that may take place on the next few months. Congratulations to Mr Read from all of us here at AIB Insurance.

World’s Oldest Female Solo Skydiver Turns Model

Skydiving Any one who has participated in skydiving will no doubt tell you that it takes a certain amount of courage to step out of a plane at several thousand feet with only a parachute to help you to land safely on the ground. Well, a lady by the name of Dilys Price has never let that get in her way.

Dilys, an ex-college lecturer from Cardiff, is an 86 year old grandmother who took to the skies when she was 54 years of age and did a skydive for a charity and never looked back. Since then she has jumped solo from aircraft on no less than 1,139 occasions parachuting down to earth completing jumps in various locations around the world.

At the tender age of 80 she was awarded the Guinness World Record for being the world’s oldest female solo parachutist. This is no doubt an award she is tremendously proud of and one that she still holds to this day.

Her latest venture is to appear as a model for the fashion brand called Helmut Lang who asked a number of Welsh ladies to model clothing for its forthcoming autumn and winter collection.  As with most things in life, she readily took on the challenge although it was probably not as daunting as when she first took to the skies to participate in skydiving.

Dilys is one of many people who have enjoyed parachuting and skydiving well into their later years whether that be flying solo or in tandem.

Here at AIB Insurance we are able to arrange suitable cover for numerous airsports so why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 to discuss your requirements with one of our friendly members of staff and obtain a no-obligation quotation from our extensive panel of insurers. We look forward to being of assistance to you.

Tom Cruise And James Corden Go Skydiving

James Corden and Tom CruiseOver the years, many of you will have been to the cinema to watch Tom Cruise star in the Mission Impossible films. One of these called Mission: Impossible – Fallout has recently been released and is doing very well at the box office both here and in other countries around the world.

He is renowned for undertaking his own stunts despite some of them being somewhat risky. In his latest movie he took to the skies and skydived from a plane but it took over 100 jumps before he felt he had got it right.

Tom Cruise and James CordenWell, not too long ago, Tom Cruise appeared on the Late Late Show in the USA that is hosted by none other than James Corden. Apparently, James Corden decided to, shall we say, “make fun” of Tom Cruise’s skydiving and, as a result, Tom challenged James to take to the air with him and complete a jump. James accepted his offer although who knows whether he later regretted agreeing to do this.

Perhaps Tom was wondering if James would back down having had time to dwell on his decision and change his mind but, no, to his credit, James appeared on the day and no doubt after some training boarded a plane with Tom and they took to the air.

From around 15,000 feet Tom parachuted from the plane on his own and James did the same attached to an instructor. You will be pleased to read that both stars landed safely on the ground.

All credit to James for doing this although it will be interesting to see if he ever does such a thing in the future.TC and JC

If you are into skydiving or any other airsports for that matter then why not give us a call here at AIB Insurance on 02380 268 351 to discuss your insurance requirements with a member of our knowledgeable team who will be happy to obtain a quotation without any obligation from our panel of insurers.

Chelsea Pensioner Skydives

Chelsea Pensioner

There has always been something rather special about Chelsea Pensioners who are frequently seen in their red coats proudly displaying their medals attending numerous ceremonies and events around the UK. As you will probably be aware, they are war veterans from the British army so are not unaccustomed to danger.

Well, recently a Chelsea Pensioner took to the skies to skydive. Mike Smith who is 68 years of age actually completed his 100th skydive. However, there had been quite a period of time since he last skydived as it was some 23 years ago since he last did such a thing.

As if that was not interesting enough, also taking part in the same skydiving event were two world war veterans who are both 91 years of age. They were actually fortunate to complete their jump at the Red Devils Parachute Team’s base that is at Old Sarum Airfield near Salisbury in Wiltshire. The jump was made for the benefit of the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans that was no doubt pleased to receive financial support.

We are pleased to hear that all three landed safely on the day and no doubt enjoyed a thrilling experience that they will no doubt never forget. Well done to the three gentlemen.Chelsea Pensioner Skydives

Here at AIB Insurance, we are able to arrange cover for a wide range of airborne sports including skydiving. With an extensive panel of insurers at our disposal we are often in the position of arranging quality insurance at very competitive premiums. So, if you are looking to arrange suitable insurance to cover you whilst skydiving, why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 and speak to one of our friendly, knowledgeable members of staff who will be happy to discuss your individual requirements and arrange a quotation without any obligation on your part. We look forward to hearing from you.

Google Street View Of The Vista Seen By A Skydiver – A World First

The Vista

Many of you will have taken the opportunity to take a look at locations both in the UK and overseas by using Google Street View and you have no doubt found this to be very useful. The vast majority of those images will have been taken by photographers stood on terra firma.

Well, a photographer by the name of Alex Mather has got together with Skydive Abel Tasman that arranges skydives in New Zealand to become the first person in the world to produce on Google Street View some wonderful views seen by skydivers. In addition, photographs were also taken of the whole skydiving experience from start to finish. The plane flew up to around 16,500 feet at which point the tandem skydivers jumped from the plane to start their descent above the Abel Tasman National Park.

Photographs were taken of the fantastic scenery on both islands including mountains, forests and the sea. It has to be said that the views are breathtaking. In addition to taking photographs, a video has also been produced showing the tandem skydivers in action.Skydiving

A great deal of work obviously went into producing this Google Street View with it taking 5 days to complete. Congratulations to Mr Mather and Skydive Abel Tasman for what has been achieved. It will be interesting to see if Mr Mather partakes in some other interesting photographic projects that appear on Google Street View in the future.

Here at AIB Insurance, we have arranged competitively priced, quality insurance for a number of skydivers on many occasions. So, if you would like to receive a no-obligation quotation, why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 and speak with one of our friendly, experienced members of staff who will be pleased to help you and answer any questions that you may have about this type of cover.

World Skydiving Record Broken By Group Of Women

Skydiving RecordIf you participate in skydiving then you may be interested to read that on Sunday 27th November 2016 a large group of ladies broke a skydiving world record.

This world record skydiving attempt was for the most number of women who descended vertically facing downwards holding onto each other in a formation. It took place over the desert in Arizona and involved 65 women. At around 6,000 metres, they jumped from a number of planes on the above Sunday morning. Whilst free-falling at great speed they eventually were able to manoeuvre themselves so that they were able to link each other’s arms and then rapidly descend vertically for several seconds. The group then broke up and, when safe to do so, their parachutes were opened and they all landed on the ground.

This world record attempt had been prepared for over the last couple of years. Various training sessions had taken place with the ladies participating in the jump coming from numerous countries around the world. There were a lot more than the 65 women who had wanted to attempt the record but quite a few were eliminated during trials.

Including additional training, it actually took 16 jumps spread over about a week before this particular skydiving world record was broken.Skydiving Record

It will be interesting to see how long it will be before another group of women attempt to break the same record.

Whilst writing, we thought that you might like to hear of another skydiving world record that was recently broken. This took place on Thursday 17th November 2016 with this being Guinness World Records Day. Martin Rees, in the UK, skydived from several thousand feet and completed 11 magic tricks whilst doing so. He now holds the world record for the most number of magic tricks carried out in one skydiving descent.

Here at AIB Insurance, we are able to arrange insurance for a variety of air sports so why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 and speak with a knowledgeable member of our team who will be pleased to obtain a competitive quotation for your consideration.

Skydivers Complete World’s Longest Swing


As a child, you probably enjoyed sitting on a swing seat in your back garden or in a playground and trying to get as high up in the air as you could perhaps with the help of one of your parents pushing you. You may well have got to a height of 3 or 4 feet off the ground.

Well, you may be interested to read that four skydivers from the Red Bull Skydiving Team have recently completed the longest swing in the world with the help of a very long rope and a couple of hot air balloons. In fact, the rope was actually 125 metres in length – a little longer than the ones used with garden swings!

The rope was attached to one of the hot air balloons and the skydivers were in the other hot air balloon in which the swing seat was placed having been attached to the other end of the rope. Apparently, the two hot air balloons were taken to a height of 1,800 metres with both remaining at the same height and were also kept a certain distance apart that must have been difficult to achieve.Skydiving

One of the skydivers then sat on the swing seat that was balanced on the edge of the hot air balloon’s basket before releasing themselves into the air no doubt making a rapid freefall descent before the rope went tight and the swinging motion then came into play. The skydiver had a red flare attached to their ankle and during the whole process he reached a speed of in excess of 100km per hour.

However, not content to make a gradual descent sitting on the swing attached to the hot air balloon, the skydiver then vacated the seat mid-air to skydive to safety on the ground doing a few flips on the way down. Congratulations to those skydivers for completing the world’s longest swing.

25,000-Foot Jump By Skydiver Without A Parachute

As many a skydiver will tell you, one of the things that is feared most by someone participating in the dangerous sport is that, when he or she jumps from a plane in mid-air, their parachute fails to open leading almost certainly to their death. So, can you imagine someone jumping from a plane at 25,000 feet but purposefully not wearing a parachute and free falling to land in a large net above ground unharmed?Skydiving

Well that is exactly what Luke Aikins did on the 30th July 2016. He is an American skydiver and completed the risky free fall in California landing safely in the huge net unharmed. He is the first person to have made such a decent from that sort of height and spent two years planning for the jump.

He is certainly an experienced skydiver, having completed in excess of 18,000 jumps over the years. For the first 10,000 feet of the jump he wore an oxygen mask and was accompanied by three other skydivers for part of the decent and, of course, those three all had parachutes that opened safely.

He was even filmed live on TV doing the jump that lasted for two minutes and was watched by his wife and young son from the ground. It must have been the longest two minutes of his family’s lives.

SkydivingThe net was hung from four tall cranes and measured 100 hundred foot square. There was a second net underneath the one he dropped into no doubt as some form of back up. Shortly before he fell into the net he turned over onto his back and made a safe landing.

Whilst Mr Aikins has no doubt been congratulated for breaking a record, this is probably not something that other skydivers should contemplate doing no matter how experienced they are. You can view a video of his decent on the Internet.

100-Year Old Grandmother Skydives

Some people believe that you are never too old to try most things in life but would you consider skydiving from several thousand feet at 100 years of age? Let’s be honest, there are possibly very few people of that age who would even consider getting in a plane never mind jumping out of one!

Well, that is exactly what an elderly lady decided to do in South Australia a few days ago. Another lovely thing about this story is that she made the sky dive for a very good cause.

Irene O’Shea was born in May 1916 so she has only very recently reached the milestone of being 100 years of age. As part of celebrating living to such an age she decided to take to the air and go tandem skydiving and raise some money for a worthwhile charity at the same time.

Unfortunately, back in 2008, her daughter Shelagh passed away having got Motor Neurone disease so her mother felt that that would be a worthy charity to benefit from any money she raised as a result of skydiving.

Anyway, Irene took to the air and was flown to a height of 12,000 feet before jumping from the plane attached to another skydiver. It would appear from the photographs that were taken of Skydiving Grandmaher safe descent to the ground that she thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

Apparently, she is not averse to adventure activities as she has also been up in a glider in the past and has enjoyed many a trip abroad travelling by herself.

This lady, who is presumably not frightened of heights, has 5 grandchildren as well as 11 great-grandchildren all of whom must have been extremely proud of her. She is also to be congratulated because, in completing this skydive, she has become the oldest person in South Australia to do so.

We wonder what she will do for her next adrenalin rush?

Congratulations and very well done to Irene O’Shea from all the staff here at AIB Insurance.

As If Skydiving Isn’t Risky Enough!

SkydivingIf you are a skydiver then you will be aware of the many risks associated with the sport. For instance, your parachute may fail to open in which case it is quite likely that you are going to die upon hitting the ground or you could end up parachuting into a wooded area that could result in your serious injury or even death. Whilst every precaution is taken to avoid such instances, they do happen, albeit infrequently when you consider the number of skydivers that take to the skies on a daily basis.

Well, you may be interested to hear of an incident that took place on Thursday 12th May 2016 in California that could have resulted in the death of 17 skydivers none of whom had even jumped from the plane. In fact, it may have been a problem with the plane that resulted in these skydivers lives being placed at risk.

Shortly after taking off with the pilot and 17 skydivers on board the Cessna 208 got into difficulty due to what may have been a problem with the engine. The appropriate authority is currently investigating the cause of the incident. As a result, the pilot had to take evasive action and try to make an emergency landing.Skydiving

During its descent, unfortunately a truck was clipped by the plane albeit the occupants of the vehicle were unharmed. It landed in a vineyard but tipped over onto its back before coming to a halt about 50 feet from someone’s home.

The occupants were, with the exception of the pilot whose nose was bloody, unharmed although they were no doubt somewhat shocked in view of what had happened. The skydivers must have remained as calm as they could because they put their helmets and seatbelts back on as they waited for the plane to make an emergency landing in the vineyard.

Let’s hope that none of our skydiving clients or anyone else for that matter finds themselves in a similar situation. It is possible to view a video on the Internet of part of the incident that was taken by one of the skydivers.