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Hot air balloon festival set to take off during May Bank Holiday

Hot on the heels of the icy spectacular that was Fire&Ice InDurham, we’re ready to share the exciting news with you about a brand-new spectacular coming to the City for the summer season…

Balloons InDurham – a hot air balloon festival taking place at locations in the City Centre and across the wider county during the May half term period - will make its debut on Friday 26th May, with an early evening hot air balloon launch from East Durham College’s Houghall Campus.

While the finer details of the event are still being finalised (keep an eye on the blog and our social media channels for updates soon), we’re delighted to share the news that this brand-new event will be the centre piece of activities for you and your family to enjoy this summer up until Monday 29th May.

Early risers are expected to be able to see a whole range of hot air balloons rise above the City from their launch point at East Durham College’s Houghall Campus each morning of the festival at dawn.  Night owls can also enjoy a spectacular Balloon Glow taking place again at Houghall Campus, between 9.30pm and 10.15pm, on the evening of Saturday 27th May.  Imagine hot air balloons inflating and illuminating the night sky, all set to a rousing soundtrack and in time with music (if you’ve never seen one before, YouTube it – it’s amazing!).

While we’re all terribly excited about Balloons InDurham, we should take this opportunity to warn you now that while the timetable has been planned to precision, some of the events are open to the elements and could be subject to change at short notice (unfortunately, we can’t control the weather!). 

Even as much as 8mph winds can scupper plans and prevent a flight from taking off, so we’re building a degree of flexibility into the itinerary – if the Balloon Glow can’t happen on the Saturday evening, we’ll make every effort to make sure it happens the following night, weather permitting.  So, during the course of the event, we’d urge people to keep checking our website and social media channels for up-to-the-minute event updates.

Adding to a jam-packed events calendar across the City, Balloons InDurham coincides with the penultimate leg of The Tour Series; Britain’s leading televised cycle race. For all you cycling enthusiasts out there, the event returns to Durham on Saturday 27th May, bringing the country’s fastest elite cycling teams to compete on Durham’s testing City Centre circuit – it’s not one to miss!

Plus, our hot air balloon festival is then followed by Summer Fetes InDurham – another BID-organised event, bringing the quintessential English school summer fair back to the cobbled streets of the City.

We’re expecting as many as 10,000 people will descend on the City and wider county during the Balloons InDurham festival, so pop the date in your diary now and be sure not to miss out if you’re looking for things to do in Durham with the family over this coming half term break. 

After all, if you thought Fire&Ice InDurham was good, Balloons InDurham is about to give it a run for its money!

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