Veronica and Friends

Where to find Veronica and friends in 2004

April 4Wellington Country Park
April 18Streatham Common
April 24 - May 2Cervia
May 29Blackpool
June 5Basingstoke
June 12 - 13Fylde
June 20Wirral
July 3 - 4Sunderland
July 10 - 11Brighton
July 24Whitley Bay
Aug 1Royston (possibly)
Aug 14 - 15High Force
Aug 20 - 23Port Stewart
September 3 - 5Bristol
Sept 11 - 12Hartleypool

2005 is getting organised already:
June 11 - 12Wirral

As you can see, Veronica is an Octopus. She has been custom built by Peter Lynn in New Zealand from Icarex, a particularly light ripstop polyester fabric that gives her an unusually wide wind range. She flies with two other large kites, Ben the Manta Ray and Anuj the Gecko.

Most folk that fly large Lynn kites fly them on relatively short lines (note that an 170' line is relatively short for an 85' kite...), on the grounds that there's no point in having a large kite if you're going to fly it so far away that it looks small.

But we have a different point of view:

When we went to Bristol, whe soared on thermals and used almost every last foot of the 2000' of air traffic clearance available. Those who have been to Ashton Court before, will know that because the location is out of town and surrounded by trees, it's generaly not possible to see the kite festival until you are inside the the park. Veronica changed that because she could be seen from the city centre.

When we flew that Manta Ray at an altitude of 1000' at Washington Tyne and Wear, the kite was clearly visible from Gateshead.

At Basingstoke in 2001, again, we had the space and clearance to fly high and were visible to people coming down the M3, a number of miles away:

We love to travel and to find new places to fly. The following list is inclomplete:

Unusualy for a Lynn Octopus, Veronica is generaly well behaved at festivals, her light weight helps to make her particularly stable. When we work at a festival, we understand that there is a job to be done, to cause the maximum impact and spectacle for the audience whilst remaining safe and causing the minimum inconvenience to other fliers. We often regard our job as being to fly for the people who are not in the field, to attract them to the event and increase the number of people who attend, bringing increased custom to the traders and increased exposure to sponsors.

When conditions and prudence the ATC permit, we often fly considerably higher than other kites, in order to attract people to an event:

Landmarks are provided purely for a sense of scale

Note that considerable space is required in order to fly at altitude. The rig for flying the Manta at 1000' is nearly one third of a mile in length and we must be able lay out the entire thing in a line in the same direction as the wind for safe launch and landing. Often we are restricted not by the CAA, but my the limitations of the site.

If you'd like Veronica and her friends come to your festival, please drop a line to Andrew & Kathleen. Hosted on Sow

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