Robin Sleight, Honorary Secretary of the BMFA and Chairman of the British Association of Radio Control Soarers, died on December 2nd, 2016.
Robin had been a member of the BMFA for nearly sixty years starting like so many others with Keil Kraft models and ED engines; he grew up in Scotland and has in the distant past been a member of the Scottish Free Flight team and a control line finalist at the Nationals. Since the advent of radio, he gravitated to competitive thermal soaring as a primary and passionate interest.
Being blessed with exceptional organisational abilities, he was an excellent Competition Director at the first ever F3J World Championships in 1998 as well as running innumerable other national and international events for both BARCS and the BMFA over many years.
After accepting the role of BMFA Hon Sec in 2009, Robin has been prolific in tackling a complete revision of the Society’s voluminous Articles of Association to bring them fully into line with current company law; he was also the author of several new policies and procedures which have made the Society a better managed activity. In all of this work, he showed great attention to detail and resilience in not only getting completion but also in charting its course through the Council to full acceptance.
His other skills were brought out in his adept handling of difficult issues in the South West area of the BMFA, as well as mediating effectively in several inter-club and intra-club disputes over the years.
Robin was truly an aviation enthusiast from his earliest days and this was an abiding passion which he was able to follow through his eminent career with GEC-Marconi and Bae Systems, as well as via his model flying at BARCS, BMFA and Invicta Club events. He even stashed some slope models to fly in Australia when visiting his daughter in Cairns.
I have valued Robin’s friendship for many decades; he was always wise counsel when I sought his views and his calm thoughtful manner and logical conclusions were appreciated by all. His notable contribution to the work of the BMFA was appropriately recognised at this November’s AGM by the award of a BMFA Fellowship, the BMFA’s highest honour.
Robin was a true gentleman, always charming and gracious in his dealings with people; he will be greatly missed.
Chris Moynihan, BMFA
Dec 8th, 2016