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Balloon Nostalgia

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  • Balloon Nostalgia

    Cover of the first flight of a British hot air balloon at sea.

    On 29th November 1970 Fleet Air Arm pilot Lt. Terry Adams accompanied by Lt Howard Draper, both of 849 Squadron B Flight, piloted the ‘Bristol Belle’, a hot air balloon designed and built by Bill Malpas, Mark Westwood, Giles Bulmer (of the Bulmer cider making family) and Don Cameron. Three other members, Charles Meisl (a Czechoslovakian citizen) Tom Sage (a press photographer from London) and Malcolm Brighton, subsequently joined the group. Malcolm Brighton had built a number of balloons and became the main builder for the project.

    In the early morning of 29th November 1970, while the HMS Ark Royal was steaming to the south of the island, Adams and Draper took off from the flight deck of the Ark Royal and flew the Bristol Belle (G-AVTL) to Malta with a consignment of mail.

  • #2

    Prince Charles visits Don Cameron of Cameron Balloons c. early 70's


    • #3

      The Double Eagle II balloon as seen over the Dorset coast in England on 17th August 1978, being observed by a Royal Navy Hunter T8

      This event marked the first crossing of the Atlantic Ocean by balloon and which was accomplished by Ben Abruzzo, Larry Newman and Max Anderson who took six days to complete the flight from Maine in the US to Miserey in France.


      • #4

        Neil Roberton's Cameron O-56 G-BBBT balloon being inflated at the Bristol 600 Exhibition in 1973 (Photo: G V Halliday)

        G-BBBT rising

        And finally aloft

        This balloon was owned by Neil Robertson of Robertson Foods.

        Our great thanks to Mr G V Halliday for his kind contribution of these photos.