Badges and Missions

As in real-world gliding, progress in your UKVGA virtual gliding is recognised by the award of 'Badges'. These take the form of the traditional 'gull' wings, one gull for going solo, two gulls for your 'B' badge, three for your Bronze and so on. These are proudly displayed next to your name in our list of members.

UKVGA encourages our members to fly badge qualifying flights online at VATSIM, and for badge claims, this helps us to verify and confirm awards. However, we understand that flying online may not always be possible, or desired. So, flights leading to claims for UKVGA gliding awards may also be flown offline, in which case references in our Badge Rules page to 'online flying' and VATSIM may be ignored.

So, whether you like to fly online or offfline, you can be a UKVGA member, and enjoy your virtual gliding and gain your UKVGA gliding awards which are our equivalent of the British Gliding Association's gliding certificate endorsements including the Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond awards, which in turn are based on those of the FAI's sporting code for gliding.

We ask that you maintain your UKVGA pilot's log book (the PIREP feature on our website) for each of your gliding launches. You can make your badge claims using the functionality which you will find under the Badge Claim item in the website menu.

For your "A " gliding award, we recommend you follow the guidance offered in our UKVGA Gliding Manual and download the Seighford scenery which you will find in the downloads section of our web pages, and the Club fleet of excellent gliders awaits you, also in the download pages.

For your "B" badge, treat yourself to a licensed version of CumulusX, for realistic thermal and ridge lift, and you are ready to soar for your 500' gain of height. Again, follow the guidance in the Gliding Manual and remember to move, or rename the 'thermaldescriptions.xml' file in your main FSX folder to get rid of those horrible default thermals.

Before you claim your 'Bronze' badge, we ask that you have completed a minimum of 20 winch or aerotow launches in the UKVGA Club gliders and complete a minimum of 10 hours total, offline or online it doesn't matter, as long as you record them by way of the PIREP system. You may think this requirement tiresome, but it is only meant to represent the 'real world' reality that you will have done at least a few launches before you get to solo and are able to fly and claim your 'Bronze' award.

For your Silver, Gold and Diamond awards, we are very happy to offer special FSX Missions which will provide every opportunity to progress in your UKVGA soaring career. These soaring missions have been designed by our friend and member from Canada, Ronald "Woody" Dandurand, and they are quite challenging as in 'real-world', success is by no means guaranteed, but they are very much fun to fly.

You will be delighted when at the successful conclusion of a mission, you are told that you have achieved all your goals. Whether successful or not, we want to hear about it, so please take a 'screen shot' of the mission outcomes page, and post it in our 'Flight Reports' forum, with your comments!

Download your Mission here:

At the successful completion of a mission, you must complete your PIREP for the flight, and submit your badge claim as described above.

You can of course design and plan your own task to meet the requirements for the award of a UKVGA Badge. However, it would be as well to submit your flight plan (best in the form of a Plan-G .pln or .plg file) to Ivan at, for approval first.

In addition, for claims for the Silver Badge and above, you must email Ivan at a valid .igc file for the flight, such as can be obtained when you install the flight recording software called Simlogger, by Ian Forster-Lewis.

If you have any questions or need any help, just post in the Clubhouse forum, and we'll be right along.

Enjoy your UKVGA gliding!