July 31, 2007

A Hint of Summer

Summer has finally arrived, if only temporarily and Airads is busy towing a water safety banner along the south coast. Coming up next weekend, Brands Hatch again with the Corona Beer banner. Silverstone was a 'washout' for the brand in May, so let's hope the weather smiles on them this time!

July 22, 2007

Public Service Emergency Messages

In view of the catastrophic floods now covering parts of the UK, Airads has offered its services to a number of county councils to include as part of their emergency, civil contingency planning.

An aircraft with a banner message, can visibly cover wide areas with vital public service and police / rescue messages and telephone numbers; e.g, "Floodline Call 08000 nnnn."

Airads can have a message flying over an affected area in a matter of hours.

Margate Pride 2007

Supporting the Lesbian & Gay Community event and march, "Pride 2007" in the north kent coast town and resort of Margate, Airads flew a banner welcoming the visitors to the town.

While large parts of the UK were underwater, Kent remained largely free of rain this weekend, which allowed a number of large public events, such as "The War & Peace Show" and "Pride 2007", to continue uninterrupted.

July 15, 2007

Tolpuddle 2007

A delightful summer's evening finish to a day I thought wouldn't happen.

While the storm was rolling over Kent at 7am, I was wondering if I we were going to get any work done at all today but with the rain still falling, we managed to get down to Compton Abbas in time to fly a detail over Weymouth and more importantly, the annual Tolpuddle Martyrs rally in Dorset, the third year we've done this.

The rally commemorates the beginnings of the Trade Union movement but it's evolving into a major folk festival. This afternoon, sadly, it was raining and the clouds were descending, fast enough for me to cut short the flight to make sure we could get back into Compton Abbas airfield, which sits some 700 feet above the ground, surrounded by magnificent scenery.

Here's a quick video of what it looks like, the co-pilots view, filmed by Suzie.B of the banner being dropped to the side of the runway and a tight circuit back into land.

July 14, 2007

Kent Show 2007

The Kent Show this weekend, and Airads has to sit over the top of it for Goodwins powertools,, promoting their stand.

Here's a photo of the show and here's a video of pilot, James, wrestling the aircraft back into Rochester afer dropping the banner and finding the 'bump' on landing!

July 11, 2007

The Big Brother Bounce

Back from a "Bounce" of the Big Brother house again, this time arranged by the Channel 4's production company.

According the the last newswire release on the web:

'An aeroplane complete with trailing banner has flown over the Big Brother house in the latest “fake week” stunt.

Housemates on the Channel 4 reality show were sent into the garden this afternoon under the pretence the house needed “essential maintenance”. Once the 11 contestants were outside, a plane flew overhead trailing a banner reading, “There is another house”.

Big Brother swiftly ordered the housemates into the caravan'.

In fact, I only watched about five minutes of the programme yesterday evening to try and work out what it might be about but the content of the programme lost me completely.

Not knowing, until afterwards, that it was arranged as part of the programming and learning from the earlier Jade and Shilpa experience, We were careful to blindside approach the building and then 'pop-up' at the very last moment, to catch the contestants before the shutters could be dropped. To be honest, I was very surprised to see them all in the garden at once.

Looking down, I could see them jumping up and down and waving, so I obligingly waggled the aircraft wings a few times. I suppose I may get a better look at it all from the ground in the programme's highlights, this evening.

July 8, 2007

Tour de France - Le Finis

Well, that's the Tour de France and the Ramsgate powerboat races completed at the same time!

It helps that both took place within 20 miles of each other and so we were able to run across to the finish of 'Le Tour' at Canterbury and then across to Ramsgate's Royal Harbour - see video - for the celebrations there.

A very busy looking Canterbury indeed, with thousands lining the route waiting for their 30 second glimpse of the cyclists.

July 6, 2007

Le Tour de Ramsgate

The worst June in living memory kept our aircraft on the ground rather more than we would have liked but even with some awful weather conditions, we managed to achieve 80% of our missions across the country.

This weekend is the Tour de France and the Ramsgate Power Boat races and the same sponsor has us doing both. So on Sunday, weather permitting, its to Canterbury Cathedral to sit over the finish of "Le Tour" and then a quick run down to the Isle of Thanet with the same banner.

Among others, we have a wedding at Sonning in Berkshire, a birthday at Saffron Walden and next week, a "Top Secret" mission, north of London that will probably make the TV cameras.

Now all we need is a little sunshine and light winds!