Issue 337: May 2015

April has been another busy month with at least two complete balloons (both 77s) and 4 envelopes (31, 77, 105, 220) all being reported as sold, together with a considerable number of bottom ends, fans, trailers and radios etc.

New for May is a nice privately owned Concept 80 for sale on behalf of Norman Apsey who is ‘hanging up his gloves’ after many years in the sport. Another bottom end from Koen (a 120 this time), 2 more fans & 2 burners ‘down under’ make up the other newcomers, whilst a complete 90 G-CLOE is being split into its component parts and again a number of price reductions have been made.

Shock news on April 13th was that Cameron Holdings Ltd, owner of both Cameron Balloons Ltd in Bristol and Lindstrand Hot Air Balloons Ltd in Oswestry called in the receivers to Lindstrand to conduct a voluntary liquidation. This follows losses at LBL, blamed on various factors including EASA regulation, terrorist attacks in some of LBLs main markets and the 21% rise of the UK pound versus the Euro in the past 18 months, giving the Euro based manufacturers huge price advantage. Cameron Holdings hold the type certificates for the LBL designs, so continued airworthiness looks to be assured. The local paper reported that this would lead to 19 jobs being lost. On 29th April however, Lindstrand Technologies, an independent company based around the corner and run by Lindstrand founder Per announced that they would re-start hot air balloon production, which must give hope to the above employees and would ensure that there is genuine competition once again in UK balloon manufacture.

The number of printed copies of the Zebedee List has reduced over recent years as more and more readers use the website. That lead to our valued ‘box ads’ being seen by less people each month, so in our recent revamp of the website those box advertisers got pop up ‘banner ads’ appearing in a random rotation as viewers click on to the various pages. Some of these banners have popped up over 10,000 times since going live in February and have certainly led to contacts for the various services and products on offer. Andy Kaye is the latest to join this process with his ads for pins. Why not advertise your wares in this way? Contact Zebedee for our competitive rates including the creation of the banner itself.

Sadly we have to report the theft, this time a collection of model balloon equipment from a trailer at the Chainbridge Hotel, Llangollen on 25th April, following a demonstration at the Llangollen Pavilion. Ray Preston reports that the items missing comprise one mini envelope, 3 mini bottom ends including several 2.2L cylinders, 2 fans (one serial GCAGK-337956), a hand inflation torch and two 40L Worthington cylinders (one serial 12830J). If anyone becomes aware of such items being offered for sale contact Ray Preston raypreston@me.com or neil.davies@nthwales.pnn.police.uk