2015 started here in the UK with the 43rd and last Icicle Meet organised by the Dante Balloon Group. The social side was highly successful as ever with many old faces seen at the Trade Show and Saturday evening dinner, with speaker Robin Batchelor relating the history of the Gordon Bennett Race. The flying side however was severely curtailed with a very wet Saturday followed by an overnight frost for Sunday (welcome) accompanied by all day fog and low cloud (not welcome!) In the event 9 balloons inflated ranging from old friend G-LORY, a Thunder Ax4-31Z from 1978 now owned by Mike Woodcock to first post delivery inflation of Andy Collett’s brand new Cameron TR-70 G-CILO. Also inflated was ‘Brian’ G-BHHN a Viva 77 which made its maiden flight at the 1980 Icicle. Pete Gooch did the inflation, Roena handed round the birthday cake! The reasoning behind Dante’s decision to make this the last Icicle can be seen in the BBAC Forum section of the BBAC website at www.bbac.org
The Ultramagic 3PS Hopper fan from Saulius advertised last month ‘flew off the shelf’ within hours (minutes?!) of the ad appearing ….. Three complete balloons and two envelopes are amongst other sales for December, whilst a special shape envelope and aged hopper envelope join the List for January together with some radios, a Flytec 4010 and the chance for commercial pilots to fly in sunny California – which sounds very attractive at the moment looking out of the window on a grey damp January …..
Finally a sad message arrived over the weekend to say that Sue Rorstad, pilot and Zebedee customer / advertiser passed away on New Year’s Day after a long illness. Condolences to husband Graham.