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News release - Issued by TalkTalk

York Balloon Fiesta Lifts Off

• TalkTalk confirmed as headline sponsor of York and Yorkshire’s first hot air balloon festival
• Inaugural Balloon Fiesta set to take place from Friday 29th September – Sunday 1st October

The skies of York will be transformed this September when the city welcomes its first hot air balloon festival, sponsored by TalkTalk Ultra Fibre Optic Broadband and supported by Make It York.

The Balloon Fiesta is the first of its kind in Yorkshire. A total of 50 hot air balloons, from all across the UK, will fly across York while a fun packed festival-style weekend takes place below. The spectacular display of colourful balloons will be visible from the Knavesmire, home to York Racecourse, on Friday 29th September, Saturday 30th September and Sunday 1st October. The skies will also be lit up with a dazzling Ultra Fibre Optic Night-Glow performance on the Saturday evening.

Richard Sinclair, General Manager for TalkTalk’s Ultra Fibre Optic Broadband said: “We’re incredibly proud to be part of such a unique event and we look forward to enjoying the weekend with balloon enthusiasts from across the UK. York Balloon Fiesta is also a fantastic opportunity for visitors to meet our Ultra Fibre Optic Broadband team and hear about the steps TalkTalk has taken to transform the city’s digital infrastructure.”

Visitors and residents can watch the balloons lift off from the Knavesmire while they explore the funfair complete with Victorian inspired rides, live music, a beer tent and tasty street food stalls from Yorkshire vendors.

Oliver Webb, co-organiser, added: “The idea came from the Bristol Balloon Fiesta, which attracts thousands of visitors and residents every year. I have lived in York all my life and wanted to share the city with other balloon enthusiasts. Balloon pilots are passionate about what they do and we’re delighted to welcome these UK balloon teams, as well as one from Belgium, to York this September. It’s going to be an amazing event.”

Steve Brown, Managing Director, Make It York, said: “York is the perfect place to run a hot air balloon fiesta and it will be a brilliant spectacle to see fifty balloons in the skies above York Racecourse. We hope this festival can grow to become one of the city’s best loved events, drawing thousands of additional visitors every Autumn.”

If you are bringing the kids along then don’t miss the fly-in from Yorkshire Air Ambulance on Sunday afternoon, as they will get the opportunity to sit in the helicopter. Yorkshire Fire & Rescue will also have a fire engine on site for the kids to explore and for adults, there will be beer and gin tasting throughout Friday and Saturday evening.

Hot air balloons are one of the oldest types of aircraft, based on the principle that hot air rises - are made of nylon, heated with a burner from a wicker basket and can fly up to two hours; an amazing quiet and peaceful form of travel. Public balloon rides will not be available this year as the 50 hot air balloons attending are flown by private pilots for sport.

Each balloon taking part in the festival will have a pilot and dedicated ground team with them to help the balloons get airborne. The balloons will fly twice a day, once just after sunrise then later in the afternoon depending on the weather. Visitors are advised to watch York Balloon Fiesta Facebook page for details.


Notes to Editors:

For further information please contact:
York Balloon Fiesta’s co-organiser Oliver Webb:

About the organisers:
Oliver Webb and Damian Torrington are the organisers of the festival.
Oliver is a York based entrepreneur and owns Munchies Cakeaway. The Munchies Cakeaway branded hot air balloon will be attending the event.
Damian is an engineer.

Oliver gained his balloon pilot licence in 2012 and learnt how to fly a balloon in York. He is a fully trained commercial hot air balloon pilot. Damian is also a fully trained hot air balloon pilot who flies regularly in the York area and overseas.

Please see below for the itinerary for the weekend:
N.B. Some events are subject to change as the planning stage continues

Friday 29th September 2017
15:30 - 16:30 Mass Balloon Launch
16:30 - 20:00 Live Music on the Minster FM Stage
Beer Tent Open Throughout, Gin Tasting

Saturday 30th September 2017
07:15 - 08:15 Mass Launch
12:00 - 16:00 Live Music
13:00 - 17:30 Balloon Tethers
16:45 - 17:45 Mass Launch
18:00 - 20:00 Live Music
20:30 - 21:00 TalkTalk Fibre Optic Night glow
Beer Tent Open Throughout, Beer Tasting

Sunday 1st October 2017
07:15 - 08:15 Mass Launch
12:00 - 13:00 Live Music
13:00 - 14:00 Yorkshire Air Ambulance Fly In
14:15 - 17:30 Balloon Tethers
16:45 - 17:45 Mass Launch
18:00 - 20:00 Live Music
Beer Tent Open Throughout

Car parking will be available at Knavesmire Racecourse York for a small fee of £6, with £1 per car being donated to our chosen charity, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.