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.

Chris is unable to instruct at present due to medical problems.  However he is still supervising and advising whenever that is needed.

Sharlene (Charlie) Benn

Flying Instructor and Examinar


Charlie is a very experienced instructor with over 2000 hours of instructional experience since 2008 gained by flying at Leicester, Coventry and Wellsbourne. She is also a flight examiner, which means she can do PPL skills tests with students who have not been her student. She can do renewal tests with anyone. It is nice to have someone “In House”. Charlie is also not one of these “Nit Picking” instructors, but very practical. If you are safe you will pass your test.







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

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