The history of circumnavigating the globe began in 1519 with the voyage of Magellan, the Portuguese explorer, whose journey lasted more than three years. Fictitious traveller Phileas Fogg took 80 days in 1873 according to author Jules Verne in his novel “Around the world in eighty days”.
Another fifty eight years passed before American pilot, Wiley Post managed the first aerial circumnavigation. In 1931 he took less than eight days and now, more than eighty five years later, beating that time is difficult in a light aircraft. Jim Jones is trying to make his mark on the achievement by becoming the oldest British man to complete the flight.
He qualified as a pilot fifty years ago, during that time he has traveled the world while taking part in the Dakar Rally and more than one thousand dirt bike competitions. Starting in 1999 along with his wife Dot he made a circumnavigation in a campervan which took seven years while visiting fifty three countries. Now he is using that adventurer’s spirit to raise funds for the vital work of the Alzheimer’s Society.
“As you get older, you see dementia effecting and influencing more and more people around you.” Said Jim. “And with an ever-aging population, it’s going to become more common which makes it so important that people are aware of the issues and that organisations that help to deal with them are well funded.”
“The idea of flying around the world in a single engine aircraft is one I’ve had for many years; it’s something that most light aircraft pilots want to do. My planning was well advanced when a friend suggested I made the flight in aid of a good cause so I decided to go with it.” Jim will be joined by his wife who isn’t a pilot herself so the flight will be considered a solo effort and will be raising funds from both crowdfunding and through corporate sponsorship.
“The aircraft will be covered in company logos to show how much support we have for this great charity” added Jim. “We aim to raise a significant six figure sum and we will be working hard to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s Society and their work in helping people affected by dementia and their families.”
For more information about Alzheimer’s society or support please go to www.alzheimers.org.uk