Page last updated at 09:03 GMT, Friday, 7 August 2009 10:03 UK

Balloons take flight at festival

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Fiesta opens with a balloon glow

More than 70 hot air balloons took to the sky in an early morning mass ascent at Bristol's balloon fiesta.

A spokesman for the event said the weather conditions were "very pleasant" for the 76 balloons which flew above the city at 0600 BST on Friday.

The fiesta began on Thursday with the renowned night glow where choreographed sequences involving 30 tethered balloons are set to music.

Weather conditions are expected to be good for the mass ascent at 1800 BST.

The international festival, which is taking place at Ashton Court, features balloons known as "special shapes" such as the Scottish piper, a supermarket trolley and a mobile phone.

A second night glow is planned for Saturday at 2130 BST and the fiesta will close on Sunday evening.



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The Guide: Balloon Fiesta 2009
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