City of London,
08
June
2015
|
17:31
Europe/Amsterdam

Lord Mayor's Balloon Regatta

A message about the experience of the Balloon Regatta, in aid of the Lord Mayor's Appeal

“At 3am on Sunday morning, something strange was afoot in Shoreditch Park. By day, a modest-sized patch of grass – a playground at one end; ringed with smart suburban houses. But on this night, every inch of grass was covered with curving shapes – jigsawed tightly around baskets, support vehicles and each other. A quiet horde arranged ropes and kit, before a briefing was called and buoyant balloonists had their hopes confirmed. Great conditions – all clear for the flight. Eager teams took their places – ropes were raised, burners fired, and balloons swelled skyward across the park. Forty ascended in perfect synchronisation – a swift transition from the roars of gas and people on the ground....to sudden stillness. Silence. Suspended in sparkling blue, gazing down at the City below. It is hard to imagine a more elegant sight – billowy balloons, rising in relay, fanning out above London’s glittering skyline.

“This was the first mass ascent of hot air balloons across London for over 20 years – delighting early-risers across the capital. A glorious celebration of our glorious City, and an important contribution to its communities through the Lord Mayor’s Appeal – for which flight participants have raised tens of thousands of pounds. This year, the Appeal’s primary beneficiaries are Mencap and Scope – which provide critical care, advice and opportunities for disabled people and their families. The Appeal also supports The Royal Ballet School, City & Guilds School of Art and The Royal Academy.

As the balloons began their descent near Orpington and Sevenoaks, organizers Exclusive Ballooning[1] and participants from across the world, took pride in a job well done. This rare regatta combined commerce and community 1000ft above London – a brilliant showcase of our City and everything it has to offer. We hope it is the first of many.”

Naiomi Thalayasingam

Lord Mayor’s Office

[1] The 2015 Lord Mayor’s Balloon Regatta is organised by Exclusive Ballooning – the world’s leading aerial marketing company – and supported by the City of London Corporation. Exclusive Ballooning operates hot air balloons around the world; famously flying under Tower Bridge for Disney. The company has been instrumental in bringing hot air ballooning into the City of London, and has helped raise over £7.1 million for charity using balloons as fundraising tools.

Planning for the 2016 Lord Mayor’s Balloon Regatta is already underway. If you would like to be involved and support the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, please contact Exclusive Ballooning via www.balloon.tv