Organisers of Bristol International Balloon Fiesta have said this year’s event is still going ahead as planned for now – but that could change as coronavirus continues to spread.
Bristol mayor Marvin Rees has already banned all public events in the city until the end of July at the earliest in a bid to tackle the virus, which has so far claimed more than 1,200 lives in the UK.
The fiesta, which attracts hundreds of thousands of people to Ashton Court every year, is set to take place between August 6 and 9 which means it is not affected by the ban – but the council added events scheduled to take place beyond July will be “placed under review”.
Last week a statement was shared on the Fiesta’s Facebook page by organisers informing fans they are “not cancelling” but are “exploring the various options available to us”.
(Image: Dan Regan/BristolLive)
When contacted by Bristol Live on March 26, a spokesperson for the event said there has been no update since the statement was shared on March 21.
The statement reads: “The health and safety of our visitors, balloonists, traders and partners is, of course, our primary concern, so we are closely monitoring the developments relating to the spread of coronavirus.
“With the event still five months away and this unprecedented situation changing daily, we do not yet know what it will mean for the 2020 Fiesta.
“Therefore, we are currently not cancelling the event and instead exploring the various options available to us.
(Image: Bristol Live)
“We will continue to work towards delivering an incredible show for the people of Bristol one way or another, filling the city skyline with balloons and help bring some colour to our communities in these dark times.”
The update goes on to say the support of partners, the ballooning community, visitors and the wider public “helps give us the strength to preserve”.
It concludes by urging people to “be kind to one another and stay safe and healthy”.
Updates on the event will be shared on the Balloon Fiesta’s Facebook page.