About Us

Welcome to Cotswold Flying School

Cotswold Flying School is a small, friendly, flying training organisation based at Draycott Farm just South of J15 on the M4 which is close to the catchment area of Swindon (20 mins), Chippenham (40 mins), Newbury (45 mins), Reading (55 mins), Andover (55 mins), Cheltenham and Gloucester (1hr  5 mins), Bath and North Bristol (1hr 10 mins), Oxford (1hr 10mins),

We are CAA approved for flying training and also to conduct ground school exams.

Our modern, comfortable aeroplanes are a long way from some of the old aircraft that can be found in most flying training organisations, and everybody who either trains in them or hires them loves them.

We recently featured on BBC’s, The One Show, drawing the largest ever One Show logo, in the sky. Watch the video here.

At the school you can be trained for your Private Pilots Licence which will allow you to fly and carry passengers anywhere in Europe in visual weather conditions.  You can also be trained for your night rating or Restricted Instrument Rating, which will allows you to fly at night, or in instrument meteorological conditions within the United Kingdom.  A cheaper but more restrictive option is to get your NPPL rating which will allow you to fly only within British Airspace.  But it can be upgraded later. Find a summary about licencing in the UK here.  Or for the official CAA information, which needs a bit of navigation try the CAA site.

Our Staff

Stuart Adey – Managing Director

Stuart Adey

Stuart has over 26 years experience in the aviation industry, ranging from both military and civil Air Traffic Control, and managing one of the UK’s largest airline pilot colleges. Stuart also has also worked for handling agents, as well as dispatching and briefing crew at international airports. He is also a keen cyclist, artist, musician and is fluent in speaking French, with knowledge in Dutch, Turkish and Russian, Czech and Spanish.


Chris Puddy – Chief Flying Instructor


Our Chief Flying Instructor, Chris Puddy, is a highly experienced pilot with over 17,000 total hours and over 5000 instructional hours. Chris has experience on over 50 different types of aircraft, including multi engine turbo prop, as well as single engine, single crew aircraft, from adventurous flying in Asia, to challenging flying in West Africa, under very difficult conditions at times. He currently teaches PPL, IMC and Aerobatics with Cotswold Flying School, as well as doing part time ferry work.


John Bowen – Flying Instructor

JB Phantom

John is an ex-military, fast jet pilot and now flies the Airbus A320 for Thomas Cook airlines. John has experience on the F4 Phantom and Hawk jets as well as instructing experience on the Jet Provost, Tucano, Bulldog and Grob Tutor. He has also worked with the Canadian Air Force on the CT114.  John teaches the PPL and Aerobatics with Cotswold Flying School, and also has experience in Advanced Aerobatic Training and Formation for which he holds a Display Authorisation.

Lee Collins – Flying Instructor and Examiner

Hugh Thompson – Flying Instructor


We aim to be as helpful as possible, so should you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us here.