In Pictures: Up, up and away as Bristol Balloon Fiesta lifts off

Dozens of colourful hot air balloons of all shapes and sizes have lifted off in the first ever Thursday mass ascent at the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta.

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
Crews prepare the balloons for the mass ascent at Ashton Court (Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
(Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
A balloon crew wait for the green light to take off and fly in the first ever Thursday mass ascent (Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
Crews inflate a balloon canopy (Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
A balloon pilot unfurls a canopy at sunrise (Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
A balloon pilot checks the rigging inside a canopy as he prepares for lift-off (Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
(Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
(Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
Balloons float over the Clifton Suspension Bridge (Ben Birchall/PA)
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta 2019
A tricky landing at Clifton Downs (Ben Birchall/PA)
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