Virgin Money have launched a fantastic new advert on national television entitled '40 Years of Better' following the acquisition of Northern Rock and we're over the moon to say a Virgin hot air balloon plays a starring role!

The beautifully created commercial, which marks the start of Virgin Money's 'quest to make banking better', celebrates the rich history of the brand, particularly in transport. We feature alongside Virgin Records, Virgin Galactic, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Trains and, after helping out with the hot air ballooning part of the ad, we were excited to see how it turned out. We certainly weren't disappointed and you can see for yourself on YouTube here or via the Virgin Money banner on the homepage or look out for it on prime-time TV.

On Monday, we exhibited at the lovely Virgin Money offices in Newcastle, formerly Northern Rock's HQ, where Sir Richard Branson hosted a launch event for the 2,000 staff. Donning a football shirt of Newcastle United, now sponsored by Virgin Money, Sir Richard gave a speech welcoming everyone to Virgin and said the combination of Northern Rock and Virgin's experience plus the Virgin brand meant the bank had an exciting future.

Newcastle United players, including Shola Ameobi and Steven Taylor, also made an appearance at the event to speak to fans and sign autographs.

At the Virgin Balloon Flights stand the balloon challenge computer game proved popular and Paul Kavanagh from Virgin Money Mortgage Processing team won the grand prize of a champagne balloon flight for two with an unbeatable score.

We also told staff about our nearest launch site for balloon rides in the North East at Witton Castle, Bishop Auckland. Flights are currently available from just £169 per person from our website. National vouchers are also on sale from £169 per person. Visit the Virgin Balloon Flights website here.