Two hundred and sixteen years ago today Andre-Jacque Garnerin did the first ever parachute jump from a hot air balloon above Parc Monceau in Paris.
As a famous balloonist, and the inventor of the frameless parachute, Garnerin was appointed Official Aeronaut of France.
To the dismay of the French police, in 1798 Garnerin announced that he was going to invite a female passenger to accompany him on his next balloon flight.
Concerned that a drastic change in air pressure might harm the delicate organs of a female body, the Police placed an injunction on Garnerin’s proposal.
The Police also disapproved of a man and woman flying together in such close proximity.more
The injunction was overturned on the grounds that the woman, Citoyenne Henri, was happy to take part. It was also agreed that there was no further scandal for a man and woman to share a balloon basket than it was for them to share a carriage.
The flight went ahead, much to the enjoyment of the crowds who gathered in Parc Monceau, and passed without incident.
First and Foremost, Garnerin was a balloonist, but his passion soon evolved into an interest in parachuting.
On October 22nd
1797 Garnerin plummeted in his balloon basket from 3,000 feet, after severing a rope which connected his parachute to his hot air balloon.
After a bumpy touch down, Garnerin landed unhurt and the first ever parachute jump was complete.
If you think parachuting is better left to the adrenaline junkies and fancy a more serene experience call us on 0844 844 8080 or visit www.virginballoonflights.co.uk
to book today.