A very happy sunny Spring to you and thanks for calling by. We are, as we always explain, an Organisation that looks after all aspects of the Continued Airworthiness of hot air balloons of all shapes and sizes all over the place and a very nice privileged job it is as well. We are very fortunate that we get to meet a most eclectic mix of happy people and this we hope is reflected in the website meaning you’ll find all sorts of stuff here so please have a look around. Time has slipped past at an alarming rate this month or so. HS2 is moving apace as far as we are concerned and we are now looking to try and stay on here for a while. Let’s hope they are understanding! Big congratulations to Alice on the birth of a small child (boy called Albert on Easter Monday) who is doing very well thankyou. This, I am told means we now have seven grandchildren! On a really sad note Lindstrand Balloons have finally had the rug whipped out and Cameron Holdings Ltd has put them into voluntary liquidation. Quite what the means in real people terms we are yet to learn but Don Cameron assured us that the employees benefits would be paid in full. What did disappoint was the lack of information put out by any of the parties. We’ll put it down to legalities.
The news this time as one can appreciate is headed up by the Lindstrand closure. We have tried to get information out as soon as we could hence the News updates that we have issued. As it stands at the moment there is no problem with continued airworthiness unless of course its broken. We still have some parts in stock and are happy to continue to support their very fine range of baskets, burners, cylinders envelopes and equipment. There may be a delay in the release of parts from Oswestry as they will have to be audited by the CAA and released to whoever takes them on (if any are still there of course!). Cameron Balloons Ltd have pledged to support them so let us hope all goes well. Our great news is that we have four more inspectors joining us with a wide ranging wealth of experience, two of which run PPT Stations. Now we can provide an even better and wider service than before. Articles up soon, if not already, cover the ongoing EASA fight with a report from Don Cameron and the BBAC’s policy statement. If you are not a member of the BBAc then you really ought to consider joining (or re-joining) if for no other reason than to ensure they can continue the campaign. In contrast, and probably somewhat lighter, there is a pub conversation that turned into an article containing reference to Keynsham and the Incredible Shrinking Man! Of course there will be other stuff as we get it sorted.
The dark barn and surrounding area has been progressively emptied although inside you’d be forgiven for thinking there is more stuff than ever, on account of HS2. The tractors have all gone now so the blackbird is nesting elsewhere this year but the chickens seem happy enough rouking about. With the sale of old Standard due any minute we thought it best to investigate why it is a challenge to start and discovered compression wasn’t its strong point so that is in bits. Barry’s Guzzi California is now running sweetly and he has flies on his teeth again, temporarily cleaned off when he backed his Colorado into the pickup. Couldn’t discern what damage it had done to the truck but his back window was a gone gone! Alice now owns the newest car in the fleet, an 04 Astra estate that I enjoyed a train ride north to collect. Amongst the visitors we had some really lovely orange biscuity things to die for brought in by Sue Kidd but they went so fast there was no time to take any piccies but luckily a few days later Andy Austin’s missus sent down some splendid cup cakes which we did manage to photograph seconds before grabbing hands whisked them away. Many thanks to both they were yummy. That’ll do for now so thanks again for calling by and we hope you find something to make you smile. Understandably, main picture is Jane Austin’s cakes and down here is another piccie of something else. Actually its G-ODAF, a Lindstrand operated by Tim Horn, being inspected just after Lindstrands closed. With 275 hours and ten years old it is still like new. Kind of really sad. All the best John, Jane, Alice, Dotty and Chris.