Portsmouth kite-flying spectacular delights crowds

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COLOURFUL kites delighted thousands of onlookers as cartoon characters, animals and mythical creatures transformed Southsea’s skies.

Organiser Jon Bloom said the 23rd annual Portsmouth International Kite Festival, held on Southsea Common, attracted more than 100 kite-flyers and thousands of visitors.

Bill Bennett flys his kite at the Portsmouth International Kite Festival. Picture: Paul Jacobs (142475-2)
Bill Bennett flys his kite at the Portsmouth International Kite Festival. Picture: Paul Jacobs (142475-2)

He said: ‘It’s gone very well, a lot of people have been walking past and stopping for a while.

‘We had more than 100 invited kite-flyers from the United Kingdom, and somebody from Vietnam and others from New Zealand and America.

‘Holding it on this site is fantastic normally.

‘The wind comes off the sea, it’s a nice smooth wind.’

The Portsmouth International Kite Festival on Southsea Common.

Picture: Paul Jacobs (142475-7) PPP-140824-024133001
The Portsmouth International Kite Festival on Southsea Common. Picture: Paul Jacobs (142475-7) PPP-140824-024133001

Yesterday may have largely been a washout but Jon said around 20,000 people came to have a look at the kites over Saturday and Sunday.

The numbers were bolstered as thousands of people headed to the city’s hugely popular Victorious Festival, also held on Southsea Common.

And on Sunday kiting enthusiasts were able to meet a star of the circuit.

Peter Powell, who brought dual-line steer kites into the UK, paid a visit to the festival.

The Portsmouth International Kite Festival on Southsea Common.

Picture: Paul Jacobs (142475-4) PPP-140824-024211001
The Portsmouth International Kite Festival on Southsea Common. Picture: Paul Jacobs (142475-4) PPP-140824-024211001

He won toy of the year in 1976 from the British Association of Toy Retailers, and has launched a Mk 3 edition of his world-famous kite.

Mr Powell was autographing the models he made at the festival on Sunday.

The festival will be back next year.

 

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