Harnessing the success of Sir Richard's first flight across the Atlantic in 1987, Virgin Balloon Flights Limited was formed.
Virgin handed the torch to its highly-experienced chief pilot at the time Kenneth Karlstrom to take the brand forward with his own company.
In the same year Virgin Balloon Flight' Chief Pilot, Kenneth Karlstrom was privileged to fly the eminant theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife in a specially adapted handicap basket.
Italy welcomed Virgin Balloon Flights where lucky competition winners were able to enjoy the beautiful city of Cuneo from the air. Italy remains a regular winter training base for Virgin Balloon Flights.
Virgin Balloon Flights took some competition winners and eight of their balloons to Gstaad in Switzerland and were joined by the famous singer, songwriter Newton Faulkner.
Virgin Balloon Flights hosted a sensational performance by British soul diva Beverly Knight in a hot air balloon during the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta. Beverly's session and interview were filmed for Red Room - Virgin.com's online music show presented by Nissan Juke.
Since its launch Virgin Balloon Flights has grown from flying around 10,000 people a year to over 30,000, making it the largest balloon rides business in the world.
Virgin Balloon Flights celebrates its 20th Anniversary by continuing the fundraising and volunteering efforts via its Love our Landscape campaign. Each month we will be revealing our birthday celebrations including events, fundraising and volunteering.