Well, I finally went and dun it. I actually bit the bullet and joined a local model club because they'd moved their field to a location a few minutes away, compared with 40 minutes previously! Off I trots and gets a really warm welcome. Real "Man Shed" stuff. Joining half way through the year gets me membership for half price and even a reduced price for the rip-off merchants in the BMFA, who are now the only source of insurance. For decades every magazine in the old MAP publishing house had an advert. for a fiver a year insurance, but when MAP was flogged off to some faceless bunch with a toy town name they stopped with the insurance and now we have to pay £29 a year to this mob. They clearly never bothered to shop around. The BMFA are what "grew" out of the Society of Model Aeronautical Engineers, of blessed memory. I will only put an SMAE sticker on my aircraft. The BMFA crap logo only goes on the English oak of my field box to obscure stains, where it belongs.
These costs endured, I can now go to the club field and be taught by any of three or four training flyers with a buddy box system and the club trainer. I have now done this 3 times and have no idea what next, so I have secured a field nearby where I can risk my skills and aeroplane alone for practice. I don't do rules, but with turn-outs way above the national average it would, I confess, be safer to fly elsewhere and so the club doesn't allow solo flying until an A certificate has been awarded or the instructor reckons you can be trusted with your own aircraft.
I have built a Pietenpol parasol wing aircraft from a Flite Test foamboard kit and an old chap at the club flew it beautifully, so I know it will perform.
I also have a foam and balsa electric Skystreak 32, built from plans which is for when I'm a half decent pilot as it'll be quick and twitchy, but it's my favourite model aircraft shape, which I've known since I was a kid.
And, today I rescued a magazine from the club hut with a free plan of a Vulcan in it made of Depron foam, which I rather like and of which I have a supply. Designed to be flown by beginners, so that HAS to be made, as I saw the real aircraft on it's last year of flights.
More news as I progress.