Popular balloon festival set to return to village

A past Wisborough Green Charity Hot Air Balloon Festival
A past Wisborough Green Charity Hot Air Balloon Festival

Balloonists are set to take to the skies as a popular charity balloon festival makes its grand return.

The annual Wisborough Green Hot Air Balloon Festival is expected to return as a see of colour graces the skies above the village on Sunday September 3.

Around 16 balloons will by flying high in two demonstrations above the village green, all in the aid of charity.

The popular annual event is subject to suitable weather conditions and has had to be postponed in the past.

The event is in its 26th year and this year will be supporting the West Sussex based Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice.

James Palmer, one of the organisers, said: “We are really looking forward to the weekend.

“We are praying for light winds and plenty of sunshine.

“When it works it’s been magical, when it doesn’t then we go to the pub.

“We are really excited, we’re all ready to go.”

The festival was first held by Cecilia and Brian Smith back in 1991.

Brian said they were helping to support the very first Red Nose Day and all the balloons and the pilots wore red noses and raised hundreds of pounds for charity.

Since then it has gone from strength to strength and has become an annual tradition in the village.

“It’s such a special event to do right in the middle of the village,” he said. “To see all the balloons packed together it’s such a special sight.”

All the pilots taking part give up their time and balloons to support the festival.

Every year it is also supported by local businesses and Brian and Cecilia said they wanted to thank sponsors Fishers Farm, The Three Crowns, Silvester Engineering, The Cricketers Arms and Airworks Worldwide.

The balloons are set to take off from the village green at 6am and 6pm.

There are still spaces available for those who wish to take to the skies in the basket.

To book a space in the balloons visit www.airworksworldwide.com/festival