Ready to launch



Amber is the new green!

Today we got an amber light from our Chief Balloonist; Phil Hooper from Sky High Ballooning, that the weather conditions for Saturday are currently set fair for our launch. He still has to make the final call on the actual day, as wind direction and speed can change, but he’s as confident as it gets with two days to go, to give us the go ahead.

We couldn’t be happier. We’re planning for success and will see you on Saturday for Knowle’s very own Redcatch Balloon Launch.

So, please note the following, very important information for the day (sorry, it’s a long read, but it’s important!):

• The park is open all day.

• The Redcatch Community Garden is open as usual from 9.30am

• Food from Peckers and The Good food Company will be served in the Garden from Midday – 9pm

• FORP team members will be onsite, setting things up from early afternoon

• The FORP tent will be at the top end of the central path (Redcatch Road entrance)

• Dogs are allowed at the event, but must be kept on lead after 4.30pm (please note many dogs do not like the noise of the burners)

• First aid: There’ll be a first aid tent with two trained medics (next to the FORP tent)

• Police: There will be a police tent at the bottom end of the playground with several officers present during the event.

• Free stickers & badges for kids: These will be available from the FORP tent while stocks last! Take your kids there when you arrive.

• Free kids colouring session: There will be a balloon themed colouring session in the Community Garden from 2pm.

• Donation buckets: The event is free, but we will have FORP donation buckets on site. So please bring some change! Events like this cost money and we’d like to do more.

• Rubbish: There will be extra rubbish bins on site. PLEASE use them.

• Raffle: Raffle tickets are still on sale until 6pm on the day. The draw will be done at that time. We will try to announce the winners but an email will be sent automatically to each one when the draw is done and we will post a list on Facebook as soon as we can. Good luck!

• FORP Marshals: There will be 20 volunteer Marshals, in FORP hi-vis vests or tshirts

• Launch perimeter: The launch area is the entire football field and it will be marked out with trees, hazard tape and pins. You are requested to please stay on the outside of this, at all times from 4.30pm until after the launch. FORP Marshals will be monitoring the perimeter throughout the event. Please help us, by keeping your little ones under control at all times.

• Disabled viewing area: We have a designated area for people with wheelchairs or mobility scooters and their carers. This is around the green shelter. Please be kind and observe this. There will be a FORP Marshal monitoring this area during the event.

• Balloons arrival: The balloonist vehicles will start arriving around 5.30pm and will be escorted from the car park entrance onto the launch field by FORP Marshals. Please try to use other entrances to the park from 4.30pm, this will really assist us to get the balloon vehicles onto and off the site quickly and safely

• Balloon launch: The balloonists will set up their balloons and prepare for launch. This process can take up to 2-3 hours depending on weather conditions. They will do their own pre-flight tests and then the Chief Balloonist Phil, will give the word for them to start inflating and then launch. This is estimated to be sometime between 7-8.30pm. Please be aware, the timing is not an exact science and Phil’s decision is final on whether the conditions are safe enough to proceed. Safety is the primary concern.

• After launch: Once all the balloons have taken off, FORP Marshalls will escort all the balloonist’s vehicles back off the site. Please try to use the other park exits during this time.

• The clean up: FORP Marshals and volunteers will clear the site and remove the perimeter pins etc and the park will then be back to normal and dogs can then be let off their leads again

• The after party! The Community Garden will be serving food and drink until 9pm so we’ll see you in there for a well-earned burger and a bevvy.

If this event is a success, then FORP aim to do it bigger and better next year!

Please help us, by taking care, acting responsibly, and having a fabulous, safe time.


Please come and enjoy a wonderful day in the Biggest Little Park in Bristol


If you have any more questions, please send an email, DM or post below. Email: hello@friendsofredcatchpark