The Hover Club of Great Britain

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					                               Systems Development Methods
                        Case Study – The Hovercraft Club f Great Britain

                             The Hovercraft Club of Great Britain

Ever since the invention of the hovercraft by Sir Christopher Cockerel in 1955 and the
spectacular first public flight of the SRN1 in 1959, the hovercraft has been generally regarded
as an unusual and somewhat eccentric form of transport. Despite the success of commercial
ventures such as the SRN6 ferry between Dover and Calais and the AP 1-88/100 craft
operating between Ryde and Southsea, true commercial success and public recognition has
eluded the hovercraft.

There are however a number of enthusiasts who cruise and race their own small craft. These
crafty are either purchased new from a small number of hovercraft manufacturers (such as
Flying Fish Hovercraft, Conair Sports, Vortex and Bill Baker Vehicles ), purchased used or
constructed from plans (such as those available from K & M Products and Hoverservices,
Wallingford, Oxon).

Whatever the source and use of the craft, all aspects of construction and recreational use in
the UK are regulated by the Hovercraft Club of Great Britain (HCGB).

The Hovercraft Club of Great Britain
This organisation was founded in 1966 by a group of enthusiasts based on the Isle of Wight,
the home of the first SRN1 Hovercraft and is the governing body for the construction and
recreational use of light hovercraft in the UK.

The HCGB maintains and publishes information relating to the construction and recreational
use of light hovercraft. It is also responsible for finding and managing suitable race venues,
organising race meetings, publicity, scrutineers, marshals, training and all the other things,
people and functions that are required for successful and safe race meetings.

These functions are looked after by the HCGB Scrutineering Committee, the Competitions
committee, the Cruising and Coastal Events committee and a number of HCGB senior
members, all overseen by the Management Council. More detail can be seen on the HCGB
website here. A number of hovercraft-related events are organised each year by the club’s
regional branches and further publicity and information distributed in the monthly magazine,
Light Hovercraft and various other publications.

The HCGB is affiliated to both the European Hovercraft Federation and the World Hovercraft
Federation. For those enthusiasts interested in racing their craft, every year a series of
meetings are organised at different venues where competitors race in one of the specified
formulae (F1, F2, F3, F305, FS and Junior) against craft of a similar specification.

Preparation for the Racing Season
Before race meetings can take place, the HCGB organises a number of things which include:
       The suitability of the venue, which ideally has:
             o a safe area where race laps can be flown on both water and land
             o an area suitable for pits from which spectators can be excluded at critical
             o sufficient, secure car parking for spectators
             o adequate vehicular access
             o insurance to cover spectators at a motor sport event
             o no, or few, residential dwellings close to the venue, as racing hovercraft
                  engines can be very loud
             o an area that can be used for participants’ camping
             o adequate overnight accommodation In the near vicinity
             o availability for the race days in question
Suitable venues that meet these criteria, such as Black Ditch Pond, are somewhat few and far
between, so all committee members keep their eyes and ears open for potential venues to
replace venues that may no longer be able to host race meetings. This was the case at the

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                               Systems Development Methods
                        Case Study – The Hovercraft Club f Great Britain

marvellous Stanford Hall venue when residential property was built within earshot. An
unofficial record is kept of potential venues and their contact details.

         Adequate resources to support the event
                o Trained and accredited marshals, at trainee, grade 2, grade 3 and senior
                o Scrutineers
                o General helpers, dogsbodies and friends of the Hoverclub
Information and contact details for venues, resources and other subjects is kept securely at
the HCGB headquarters
According to HCGB regulations drivers of F1, F2, F3, F305 and FS craft must be sixteen
years of age or older, be current Premier Plus! members of the HCGB and hold a current
Hovercraft Club Hovercraft Operating Licence. Gaining this licence involves the driver
completing a series of driving competence tests successfully. A register of licence holders is
kept by the HCGB.
All drivers of F1, F2, F3, F305 and FS craft must have completed a number of races as a
novice driver, in novice only races, within two years of their initial registration. To retain a full
licence drivers must complete a minimum number of races each season. Hold this minimums
number of races not be reached, the driver has to re-register and complete the requisite
number of races as a novice before being allowed to participate in F1, F2, F3, F305 and FS
races once more. The HCGB keeps detailed manual records of drivers and their details to
ensure compliance with their regulations.
Once a driver has their licence and gained their allocated race number by registering their
craft for the season, they can compete in formal race meetings and start to accumulate
national championship points.

A Hovercraft Race Meeting
Before racing commences at a meeting, all craft are formally scrutinised against the HCGB
racing regulations by trained scrutineers and the result of the scrutineering is recorded on the
HCGB scrutiny form and the craft log book. Each driver may also be required to complete a
manoeuvrability test and\or a breathalyser test prior to racing. Should a driver fail either or
both of these tests, they may not race and the outcome of the tests is recorded.
Although competition for the national championship in each formula is fierce, the spirit of the
competition is collaborative and supportive. It is not unknown for a competitor to lend an arch-
rival their spare engine so that the remaining races in a meeting can be completed, following
engine failure.
A number of heats, semi-finals and a final for each formula take place at each meeting. Points
are awarded to competitors who achieve the first seventeen places in each final. Throughout
the season, the results of the finals at each meeting are collated for each formula.
Intermediate results are published on the HCGB website throughout the season.

The End of Season
At the end of the season a formula champion for each formula is declared. This position is
prestigious and often the subject of much discussion.

The top competitors in each formula may also chose to compete in additional races run under
the jurisdiction of the European World Hovercraft Federations. Success in these
championships leads to a European, or even world title.

Recognising the success of HCGB members and other hovercraft enthusiasts is a major role
of the HCGB.

With grateful thanks to the HCGB and its Chairman, Martin Scrimshaw, with whose
permission this case study was written.

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                               Systems Development Methods
                        Case Study – The Hovercraft Club f Great Britain

The Task at Hand
The main committee is conscious that, although the organisation runs smoothly, accurate
records are kept, an audit trail is maintained and some use of modern technology is made,
there is much scope for increased use of computer technology.
To help the HCGB to achieve this goal, your team has been asked to carry out a formal
structured analysis of the processes that need to be carried out by the HCGB, and the data
needed to support them, every season and every race meeting to ensure their operations run
Detailed Description of Assignment Deliverables

4.    A group report detailing the proposed solution for the scenario detailed in the
      case study and a prototype of elements of the proposed system.

      To be handed in by Date

      This must include:

      1.     A process model.
             The model should include:
             1.1. A context diagram
             1.2. A statement of the aim of the proposed computerised system
             1.3. A levelled set of data flow diagrams including
                   1.3.1. Process descriptions
                   1.3.2. Data flow descriptions
                   1.3.3. Data store descriptions
                   1.3.4. External Entity Descriptions

      2.     A data model detailing the structure required to support the computerised
             elements of the proposed system.
             The model should include:
             2.1. An entity relationship diagram

             2.2.   An attribute list for each entity including primary and foreign keys

      3.     Documentation of the prototype of key elements of the system.                 (5%
             (The functional requirements of the prototype are defined in section 5 below.)

             The documentation will include:
                  tables and relations to implement the complete data model developed in 2
                   above. (design and implementation decisions/compromises should be
                  screen designs for the elements of the prototype
                  an example report layout showing a snail's results for that season,
                   meeting by meeting.

      4.     An allocation of peer assessment points to quantify the contribution of group

      5.     A maximum of 5% will be awarded for the for the report for professionalism,
             quality of presentation and adherence to the School of Computing reporting

NB    All diagrams (except the Object Models in section 3) must be constructed using the

5.    A group demonstration of the prototype.

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                               Systems Development Methods
                        Case Study – The Hovercraft Club f Great Britain

      To take place between (dates)

             It is required that a prototype, built in Microsoft Access, is demonstrated. The
             prototype will include:
                    A form or forms to allow the capture and amendment of details of a driver
                    A form or forms to allow the capture and amendment of details of a
                    A form or forms to allow the capture and amendment of details of a race at
                     a race meeting
                    A form or forms to allow the capture and amendment of the results of a
                    The production of report detailing a driver’s race results for a specific

      The demonstration of the prototype should focus on the functionality, usability and
      interface design of the prototyped aspects of the computerised elements of the
      solution. It will be expected that the database structure required to support the

Where a group fails to attend their demonstration, no marks will be awarded for the
demonstration and no marks will be awarded for the report.

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