Dozens of balloons took to the skies across Bristol today – and set a new world record.
The mass balloon event, run by Exclusive Ballooning, saw more than 30 hot air balloons take off by special permission from Bristol Airport runway.
The pilots were competing in a hare and hounds race, which is the first balloon to land closest to the lead balloon.
The event, part of the Exclusive Cup competition, broke the record for the largest mass ascent from an international airport runway.
Andrew Holly, operations director of Exclusive Ballooning said: “What a fabulous morning for breaking a record.
“ I’ve always wanted to fly the Exclusive Cup competition from Bristol International Airport.
“We saw a unique opportunity for a mass ascent from the airfield and, with the full support of North Somerset Council, we took off this morning from the end of runway 27.
“The whole experience was amazing, surreal and one of the most memorable flights we’ve done.”
“We’re delighted we’ve been able to break the record for the largest mass ascent from an international airport runway.”
The Exclusive Cup Balloon Race will be running from a series of locations across the district with balloons of all sizes and shapes taking to the skies.
The mass balloon event will see hot air balloons take off from secret locations at dawn across the region as they compete to be the first balloon to drop their markers on targets set in open countryside.
The event, in its 14th year, is Europe’s largest annual hot air ballooning competition.
However the locations of where the balloons will launch from is to be kept a closely guarded secret to ensure the event complies with covid guidelines.
Dave Lees, CEO, Bristol Airport said: “It has been an exciting challenge, to plan and arrange an event of this scale whilst keeping the event confidential to remain within the covid restrictions.
“The region has a long and strong relationship with the hot air ballooning community, from award winning events to hot air balloon design and manufacture and we were delighted to play our part in today’s mass ascent.”
To get breaking news like this straight to your inbox, click here