Families treated to a day of flight-themed fun at Airbus supported Air Smiles Day | Bristol Airport
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Families treated to a day of flight-themed fun at Airbus supported Air Smiles Day

Created: 27th Mar 2018

On Saturday 24 March 2018, 18 children from the Rainbow Centre and their families were invited to Bristol Airport to experience an unforgettable aviation-themed Air Smiles day sponsored by Airbus.

Air Smiles Day Group Image
Airbus teamed up with Bristol Airport and leading UK aviation charity fly2help to put on a thrilling and action-packed day at the Bristol and Wessex Aeroplane Club for the young visitors and their families. The day saw the young people, many of whom had never been on board an aircraft before, explore a jet and a private aircraft, test out all the controls in a cockpit at the instruction of senior pilots, and meet some of the Airside Operations team. 

Bristol Airport’s police team also joined the fun and put on an exhilarating demonstration with their highly trained police dogs.

Airbus graduates and apprentices also ran interactive experiments to teach the young people about aerodynamics and flight, demonstrating how to operate a wind machine and a Bernoulli blower, and running a paper aeroplane competition. The activities culminated in a chance to race some sphero balls around an obstacle course and experiment with some virtual reality lenses. 

The day was designed to offer the young people from the Rainbow Centre an entertaining and memorable day. The Rainbow Centre is a local Bristol charity dedicated to helping children and their families suffering from a bereavement in the family.

Karmen Losey, Clinical Services Manager at the Rainbow Centre, said: “This day has been brilliant. Some of the children here were quite recently bereaved and it’s been wonderful seeing their faces lighting up again. There’s been a great range of activities that they don’t normally manage to access and it’s also been invaluable for the parents who have been affected to see their children having fun and being so engaged.”

One of the children aged 11, said “Today has been awesome! I loved seeing the planes and the police dogs and playing with the VR goggles – it’s been so much fun!”

Ruth Weir, one of the parents attending the event, said “The highlight today was definitely seeing the planes. The pilots were really engaging and allowed the little ones to sit in the cockpit and put the headphones on and everything – they genuinely think they’ve now learned how to fly!”

Jacqui Mills, Public and Community Relations Manager at Bristol Airport, said: “Bristol Airport is really proud to be part of this very special day, allowing these young people to create some wonderful memories and to forget about their worries just for one day. Aviation is so inspiring and it’s lovely that we can share that inspiration with the young people and just create a little bit of magic.”