The Gentlemen's Ale Sampling Society

        1982-2017  35 YEARS OF BEERS





The Robin Hood pub, Bluebell Hill

A 13th meeting of the year due to the postponement of the actual July meeting.
It should have been Hot Air Ballooning, but bad weather caused it to be moved to 26th July.

A good turnout for a pub piss-up, all paid for by the members themselves
because GASS has spent all the money on higher than normal quality meetings.








with Airborne Balloon Flights


Check them out here -




We had a demon (Tony style) deal whereby we have exclusively hired two massive balloons, one for 12, one for 8.

They were on special offer and we paid a very reasonable 79 per person for the flight.


The turnout was excellent with only Chris, Len, Stuart, Al and Andy missing out, and Andy came along for the scoff.

GUESTS:  Miles Henslow, Rob Mankelow and Roy Easdown, each at 50 a nob guest fee to make us to the magic 20 pax.

Well done to everyone for turning up on time and for responding to texts, it was a great help, most un-GASS like.


Thanks also to the guys at Airborne Balloons - Chris and Steve our pilots, to the trusty ground crew and to Sandie & Beckie in the office.

We turned up on time, in the right place, on the right day - we got briefed, we unloaded the balloons and we blew them up.

Then it was up, up and away for a lovely hour flying south over the Weald of  Kent in a Sissinghurst direction.
We enjoyed a few glasses of Champagne on board and took in the sights.
After an hour there was a crash, band, wallop, and we landed in a field, safely I am pleased to report.

We deflated the balloons, we rolled then up, and we were driven back to Leeds Castle in style.
We then enjoyed a delightful banquet at the Taste of Bengal in Harrietsham.

A very enjoyable meeting, memorable!

Best described in video and pictures....


and now some pictures...

(incidentally, the group pictures can be printed off at full size from a clever trick below if you want one)

The BIG bugger is aloft!


Briefing first, note Phil's concerned visage in both shots...


then unload and blow up...


then it really is - up, up and away!!!


made all the better by a few glasses of champers.....

and a bloody daring photographer - suspended from a rope would you believe...

the 'little team' had one too.... (these great shots can be printed off - see below)

but all good things come to an end so you roll it up....

you abuse the organiser (those are my legs in the air) - why I ask?.....

Then you sit on the bag in black and white - again - why?

Then you take off in style just dying for an Indian!

To print off full size shots of the best group photos just use these links...


Apologies to the 'little balloon team' for the paucity of pictures of them.
Two reasons.  First they did not think to send me any, second the 'big team' were organised enough to arrange a professional photographer to be on hand when we landed.  Not strictly true.  In fact Doug Hall was kind enough to rush out of his house and bang off some great shots and also kind enough to allow us to reproduce them here.  Thanks to Doug and you can catch him at

To see all the shots Doug took follow this link:-