Balloon Repair Station

News 15.02.14

Notheisz Hot Air Balloons – new kid on the block?
1 Notheisz BalloonWell here’s a thing. We’ve not noticed it before but Hungarian Balloon manufacturer Notheisz has gone and got on the EASA TCDS List coming in at BA.025 and listed as Notheisz HAB. I’ve never heard of them and have to say not really spotted the listing before but a quick bit of wibbly wobbly webby turned them up. Seems an AX-6 balloon they built won the 2007 ballooning championship in Japan. According to their blurb ‘This balloon was manufactured to meet the expectations of racing pilots. Its unique shape and perfect flight features greatly contributed to our skilful pilot’s success in winning the first place in Saga, Japan and a second place in Daejeon, Korea in 2007’. Details of the Racer type balloon is at and it is for sale. We’ll try and find out a bit more about them then.

Foiled by balloon-Trains halted as balloon hits wires
Kindly sent to us from an Iceni tribesman this made us chuckle. Although the truth seems a bit at odds it appears a child’s foil balloon hit overhead cables and caused a major power cut in Cambridgeshire on 7th February. It may have been a ‘fly the furthest’ prize balloon and the entrant got caught out cheating. The power outage (neat phrase) halted the Kings Cross to Peterborough East Coast Main Line. Two trains were evacuated as a result of the balloon incident. First Capital Connect reported that their trains stopped at 12.50 south of Huntingdon and a spokesman for operator East Coast Trains stated that the 10:45 service from Leeds was also stuck at Huntingdon for more than three hours. Some of the trains ended up being diesel hauled for the rest of their journeys whilst delays continued long after power was restored. I wonder what shape foil balloon it was? Maybe it was one of our nice shiny ‘Stop HS2’ ones we are currently testing! On the 7th February it was probably the only balloon flying!

Khaos Keeps up the Pressure-Brits in the news
2 Andy Kaye melbourne landingOnce again we got another exclusive from Andy kaye and the enjoyable flights he has been having over Melbourne. Fortunately the authorities and news media have a really laid back take on balloons landing in confined or unlikely spaces around the city. This time he actually made the newspapers when he made a handling line assisted landing in a garden in Auburn Road on the Hawthorn district of Melbourne when the winds fell light and variable. All ten passengers and the balloon were totally undamaged. Neighbours called the emergency services but they weren’t needed as the balloon was man-handled into a tight spot. Andy reported that the problem came when they came to deflate it and a long careful pack-away had to be carried out. Local Birgit Loch posted the picture along with the great comment ‘Wow, they just landed a hot air balloon in a front yard along Auburn Rd!’ Some more great pictures of this non-event at

More balloon meets confirmed-Book now
We have just had news of a number of balloon meets that have now been confirmed including the popular Northern Balloon Groups Yorkshire Dales, Bedale Balloon Meet which we’ll try and get to this year (honest). It will be held between the 20th and 22nd June at Bedale in North Yorkshire. Now if you ever really needed a reason to go the fact that The Black Sheep Brewery and Grommet’s lively Wenleydale steam railway are a stone’s throw down the road should suffice. Entry is a paltry £10. For more information on the meet go to the events page or check out Good sports – The Bedale Meet 2013 elsewhere on the site. Also there are details on this years’ Car Fest South and a Leeds Castle Meet that shouldn’t be missed.

Two to go a longer way-Gordon Bennett UK Teams announced
Officially out is the news that our old muckers John Rose and Chris Wood will be entering the Gordon Bennett gas balloon race again this year and intend to go even further and win. Having just got back from practising flying a long way and getting cold in the Alps John told us they are ready to rock. The Race this year will be from Vichy in France with a launch window from 28 August to 6 September so if the winds are kind they may get home. This will be the 58th Coupe Aeronautique Gordon Bennett as those PC FAI folk describe it. Previous ones have included some nail-biting live mapping which was extremely popular so let’s hope the French get their laptops working properly so we can all enjoy it. The second GB entry will be Paul Spellward and Colin Butter this time flying in their syndicate balloon.

Busman’s holiday?-CAA stretches its wings
3 Balloon Team Chadwick BaganSeems the world of the interweb knows no bounds and so when the CAA’s balloon man Ian Chadwick announced that he was off to Burma, or whatever its currently called, all eyes were on Faceache. Actually, despite rumours that he was checking out a balloon ride operation there he was actually on a trip with his son Daniel to visit other son Gavin who is flying there. Naturally all the normal pomp and dutiful ceremony was applied for his arrival and first thing was the ‘Welcome Ceremony’ with their host family and so day one with the family in Baganwas the first colourful post. Interestingly it does reveal that the rumour that all the UK ride pilots head east for the winter appears true. Spotted in the group is Ian Martin, Sue Martin, Clive Bailey, Janet Taylor-Simmons, David Sutcliffe and Daniel, Gavin and Ian Chadwick amongst others. We wonder if there will be a language barrier?

2014 Worlds go off the scale
Just as alluded to by Linsey Muir the Brazilian Organisers of the 2014 World Hot Air Balloon Championships are continuing not to be apparently getting it right. If the Official Website is anything to go by its not looking good. Available in Spanish only not much seems to have changed since last we looked. This is officially the 21st FAI World Hot Air Balloon Championship and is set to run from 17-27 July in Rio Claro, Brazil. Despite a list of sponsors and the original offer to ship 50 balloons to the event free of charge and provide subsided accommodation it now seems that they will be charging €7.20 per kilo to ship a balloon from Europe whilst room prices have risen by over 25%. This means that it is likely to cost each team in the region of £10,000 to compete. Any takers?

Big One coming up – 3.4.40 celebrates
4 3440 region logoForget all the other events going on this year and make sure you don’t miss the 30th Anniversary of the 3.4.40 Region. Started in 1984 the region which is affliated to the British Balloon and Airship Club was named after the motorways M3, M4 and M40 that pass through its area which includes Hampshire, Berkshire, Wiltshire east of Salisbury Plain, and much of Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire. They maintain close links with other regional balloon clubs including the Mid-Hants Balloon Club, Western Region and the Black Horse Balloon Club. Membership is open to anyone interested in ballooning be they Commercial Operators, Private Pilots, Pilots under Training (PUTs), Retrieve Crew, or people who simply enjoy being around balloons. Members do not have to live in the Region and many join because they fly in the area or they enjoy attending their monthly meetings, which are held on the second Monday of each month except December.

The programme secretary arranges a mixture of speakers, some instructional, some entertaining, and some on topical issues. Above all emphasis at the meetings is on good fellowship and the opportunity to meet others interested in the sport. Flying They also publish a monthly newsletter, Flying Wires, which gives information on future meetings, news on local ballooning activities, and updates on issues such as landowner relations. In addition they aim to arrange two or three balloon meets during the year which include some rudimentary competition flying. In particular they organise the ballooning at the Woodcote Rally in July as well as a meet in November to celebrate the first manned flight, in a balloon made by the Montgolfier brothers in 1783. The mass balloon launch from the Newbury Show in September as well as the International Icicle Balloon Meet in January are also local events which are organized with the help of members of the 3-4-40.

To celebrate this auspicious occasion they have come up with a fresh new logo and they are holding the Dog House Ballooning Weekend 3-4-40 BBAC 30th Anniversary at their current home, The Dog House Hotel near Abingdon, over the weekend Saturday 24th May to Monday 26th May with the intention of gathering members past and present together for a jolly knees up. Flying will be from a field next door and the food and beer at the Dog House is recommended! For further details please contact Jonathan Harris on‎

Fly It Ride It…Fly It? – Now there’s a thought
5 Aye up aero engined carEvery year there is a Ride It Drive It Day and for us Old and Rusty Club folk it’s a good excuse to blat off somewhere and enjoy our ancient transport. This year the date is set for the 27th April Ride with the main centre our way being Bressingham in Norfolk where, joy of joys, they have a Railway Museum. We got to thinking how about a Drive it Ride it Fly it day? The BBAC organised one some years ago but somewhere along the way the details of flights undertaken got lost and despite many balloons taking to the air who did what and went where remains lost in the annals of time. This year then we will put our hats on and give it some further thought so watch this space. The 27th is a Sunday this year so the weather will be lovely and the tide may even have gone out.

Get knitting – 2014 Cameron Maintenance Courses
Two Cameron Balloons’ Maintenance Courses will be available this year. The first will run from 4-6 March and the second 4-6 November 2014 perfect for a Bristol Bonfire Night. The Maintenance Course is ideal and beneficial for existing or training pilots, Civil Aviation Authority personnel, Cameron Balloons fans and for experienced balloonists who would like to refresh their balloon maintenance skills. Run by Cameron Balloons staff and overseen by Lindsay Sadler the Production Director the 3 day course costs £384.00 (a non-refundable deposit of £144 per person required) which includes course study materials and practice equipment with a buffet lunch provided each day. Advice on local accommodation can be provided but is not included in the price. On completion of the course candidates will receive a Cameron Balloons certificate which lists the level and skills they have attained. The course covers basic permitted maintenance, using a practical hands-on approach to the topics covered in the Cameron Balloons’ Maintenance Manual. Places are on a first-come-first-served basis with a minimum of 6 candidates and a maximum of 12 per course (groups of 6 per workshop). Please note this does not permit any certificate holders to be an approved inspector nor an approved repair station. To book onto the course, please contact their Sales Department: or telephone +44 (0)117 963 7216