31/01/2016 Back to News
Brass Monkeys - not just brass ones, but wet and windy monkeys too.
Rudding Park, Harrogate - January 30th and 31st.

Coo, the weather had a right old hissy fit this last weekend; it was cold, it was wet, it was windy, it was cold and wet and windy, it was sunny, and it snowed!
Saturday morning briefing did go ahead (of course) but the chance of flying that day (OR THE NEXT) was lower than a snails bottom jaw so the day was spent at leisure, until the evening when we went ahead with the planned EGM and then the evening meal.

The Brass Monkey Trophy which is awarded for outstanding achievements in ballooning, in particularly within the club, found a new home with Terry and Barbara Chamberlain. Terry and Barbara have been members of the club for many years, Terry has been the club's safety officer and can put his name to various committee roles and also that of chairman, they attend practically every meet and have had a positive effect on the club during difficult times. We felt that our little Brass Monkey should make himself at home with them and remind them that they are thought of with such high regard in the club.

The Arbor Eat 'Em trophy was awarded to Ray Wright, not for a 2015 close encounter with a tree, but for his 2014 close encounter at Strathaven. The trophy did not reach him last year, so is with him for this.

The Trans Pennine Challenge Trophy is awarded to the pilot from either the PRBA or the NWBAC who completes a flight during the calendar year from one side of the Pennines to the other - either way, without stopping or picking up more fuel. This last year we had some good entries but the trophy went to Brian Mead for an outstanding 30km+ journey from Kirkby Lonsdale to Star Botton. He flew one of Tim Wilkinson's Sackville balloons with Andy Austin along for company. Jane Austin provided cake, and the retrieve! The write ups (which may be in Scoop given room) from the contenders were amusing, especially Messrs Cannon and Haworth who both attempted to claim the trophy via a number of 'firsts', i.e. first team to take off in Lancashire with more on board than on landing in Yorkshire, or first team to land in Yorkshire with less on board than when taking off from Lancashire, or first team to take off from Lancashire and land in Yorkshire with a newby on board........etc. etc., and if you are wondering about the less on board bit, the team had a 'positive' landing and Peter fell out leaving Graham to P1 on for a further 200m into Yorkshire. Ray Wright was another contended, and has vowed to win the trophy back next year......the challenge is on!

We then welcomed along after dinner speakers; Meghan Hadfield and Victoria Pilgrim. They are both in the final year of their degree at The University of Westminster and wanted to make a film about ballooning. The result was a lovely film called 'Carried Away' and included some lovely footage of the Le Puy en Velay meet along with short features on Cameron balloons and Ultra Magic balloons. Unfortunately the sound system let us down so I recommend checking out You Tube. Keep their names in mind as I am sure we will see them rolling by in the credits at the end of numerous TV productions to come - in fact Meghan is currently working on Celebrity Big Brother and Victoria is currently working on ITV and Channel 5 news.

The dinner table task for the evening was to produce a limerick with the first line of 'The Brass Monkey came out to play' ...... the outstanding winner was Brian Mead and his efforts will shortly be in Scoop.

Thank you to all those who attended, it was lovely to see everyone.
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