Balloon Repair Station

Welcome 01.05.2020

Easy Balloons and Covid 19 update
Hi and a very warm welcome to you. Thanks for dropping by. Slight rethink on the way we present in the present clime. We will use the Welcome page to let you know exactly what we are at or not. You will find a bit of a repeat in the News but this seems to be where everyone comes first. Thank you. Currently we remain closed and are not planning to carry out any inspections or repairs for the foreseeable. At the moment, apart from the threat of infection and travel restrictions and although we would love to see all our customers again and earn some money, we will not be carrying out any inspections or maintenance until Government and CAA advice allows it. Inspections and maintenance are permitted provided it is essential but we do not think it is in the case of balloons and for us the risk is just too high at present. We are currently helping to care for Jane’s dad, who we are pleased to say made to 100 and got his card from the Queen (more here), and our Pete, who is still undergoing chemo, John is also on call for his 93 year old mum so we do not intend to take any unnecessary risks. We also reckon it would be unwise to even cold inflate a balloon in the present climate. For those that have chosen to actually inflate balloons during the Lock-down it certainly has drawn unfavourable comments amongst the public and the majority of balloonists. We will review our position in August. It is extremely unlikely that we will be able to commence flying due to social distancing and public caution until much later in the year. This may well mean that there ends up being little or no point in insuring or inspecting the kit for this season. There is no problem with the CofA or ARC expiring and as soon as it looks likely that flying can re-commence and that social distancing is relaxed then we will review the situation and go flat out inspecting and ensuring we do all we can to get you back in the air. We do appreciate that some of you may be hoping to attend overseas events and want to get your balloon inspected before August. If this is the case then please use someone else, we do understand and will not be offended. Guidance for our inspectors is currently being prepared. As for flying please wait until Government and CAA restrictions, are eased at the very least and that you personally feel it is acceptable, you are brave enough or are sufficiently thick-skinned to turn up unannounced in someone’s field. Please be very careful.

Very sad news in The News is the passing of Steve Burden in The Netherlands following the effects of the Coronovirus. I admired and respected Steve enormously and many lovely tributes have been coming in. He was one of the first inspectors to join us and his work was always thorough and totally without fault. I will miss him enormously. When this wretched thing is over we will have bit of a bash, one way or another, in his honour. In the Pages bit there are a lot of updates on the Events page with further information in the News. On the article front Peter Dowlen has sent us a report on the last meet to be held before the Lockdown namely ‘Strange Times – The 5th Leap Meet’ which, unsurprisingly, didn’t manage to fly, never mind there’s lots to do in Wales. In February? Following on from the stuff on the manufacturers during the outbreak we have put together a similar thing on the Balloon Clubs called Corrie Virutrolic nasty thing and the Balloon Clubs. For the sadder amongst us or a useful thing when you can’t remember how it was is a thing on Cameron fuel gauges. In the doing department (and should be out with this) will be a bit on Jane’s dad’s birthday afternoon out. No idea what else we’ll get done maybe a gardener’s world thing on allotments when stuff really gets going or the best polish for Worthington cylinders. There are still a couple of unfinished articles which I must finish so this will be updated nearer the time which is only a few days away.

As you can probably imagine not much is being done in the Dark Barn but it is currently being filled with stuff for bits that need doing and now needs a very good sorting through. Nice that I can take to the hills and walk me dog up there spend a few hours chatting to meself do a spot of weeding then walk back. Shame the Swan isn’t open for a swiftly. Just finished off making up some beams to support the covered patio thing that runs from Edward’s (Jane’s dad’s) house through to Trevors’ who was delighted that due to social distancing he couldn’t help but sat in his deck chair making useful suggestions for a while! Ivy had replaced the main supporting post and it had a bit of a sag. Also put some windows in a couple of Shannon’s ambulances that were on call but so far not deployed apart from me borrowing one to break Edward out of Wycombe Hospital after they couldn’t deliver him back after a bit of maintenance. Missed me vocation there. All the best from John, who is currently suffering from serious back pain and managed to get a scan on Monday and hopefully they’ll find out what is causing it as he can’t continue living on a cocktail of painkillers that don’t do much, Jane who is being the go-getter of stuff and weekend dinner lady for her dad who thinks its Monday, Polly and Chris. Thanks for visiting. Top piccie is our Pete clearing the railway line ready for the Great Bassett Lowke Revival. Second is the Workshop Lottie with the beans and spuds and other bits in. Please do take great care.