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Watch Goodyear Blimp fly over Kent ahead of appearance at British Touring Car Championships held at Brands Hatch


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An iconic airship has been spotted flying through the skies above Kent.

The world-renowned Goodyear Blimp took people by surprise as it flew over the south coast and different parts of the county a day ahead of schedule.

Watch the iconic Goodyear Blimp fly over Ryarsh, near West Malling

Eagle-eyed residents spotted the airship as it passed its way into the UK over Folkestone this morning before flying further inland.

The flightpath saw it cover Dover, Maidstone and parts of Dartford.

This afternoon the blimp was spotted flying over Ryarsh near West Malling before heading over to Thurrock, Essex and back into the county via Gravesend and the Medway Towns.

The blimp will be soaring over the London skyline later this week before heading to Brands Hatch to catch all the action at the British Touring Car Championships (BTCC) over the weekend.

From there it will provide aerial footage of the BTCC race being broadcast on ITV4 and ITV1.

The Goodyear blimp was spotted flying over Gillingham. Photo: Martin Gardiner
The Goodyear blimp was spotted flying over Gillingham. Photo: Martin Gardiner
The Goodyear blimp was spotted flying over Cuxton, near Gravesend. Photo: James Maybank
The Goodyear blimp was spotted flying over Cuxton, near Gravesend. Photo: James Maybank
The Goodyear blimp was spotted flying over Gravesend this afternoon. Photo: Jason Arthur
The Goodyear blimp was spotted flying over Gravesend this afternoon. Photo: Jason Arthur
The Goodyear blimp has returned to Kent ahead of a schedule of events this week. Photo: James Maybank
The Goodyear blimp has returned to Kent ahead of a schedule of events this week. Photo: James Maybank

It's being based at Damyns Hall Aerodrome, near Aveley, Essex for this week's flight programme.

The blimp was intended to fly out tomorrow but its first foray into Kent skies for nearly a year had to be brought forward due to the cold and wet weather predicted over the Channel tomorrow morning.

The Goodyear Blimp is an icon all over the world and regularly travels to key motorsport events, as well other big sport and entertainment events, ranging from FA Cup Finals at Wembley to Live Aid.

Last year the blimp returned to the UK for the first time in over 10 years to much fanfare.

It is an impressive 246 feet long – or the same as almost 17 black cabs lengthways – and is packed with 297,527 cubic feet of helium.

The airship usually flies at around 1,000 to 1,500 feet in the air, and travels at a top speed of 73 miles per hour – as fast as a Category 1 hurricane.

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