Brownridges in The News

Jon Brownridge, a Toronto school principal, took up ballooning after a pleasure flight while on holiday in the English Yorkshire Dales. His escapades as he learned to fly in Southern Ontario and his experiences after he qualified as a balloon pilot make for a sometimes funny, sometimes alarming, and ultimately a very moving tale.

The author fell in love with ballooning after his first flight in the Yorkshire Dales and vowed to get his balloon pilot's licence in Canada. Despite a high pressure new job in a tough Toronto school, he soon set about learning to fly a balloon. Already an ultralight pilot, he sensed that ballooning was an altogether more sociable activity.

He learns from his first instructor's example never to leave a passenger in the basket on her own and not to go too close to cows. However, after he burns his trainer's bum, he has to move on to another. When he finds a phlegmatic Englishman to teach him, he comes on in leaps and bounds, performing some hair-raising flight manoeuvres and even passing the wrong aviation exam after a mix-up at the test centre.

Once a qualified pilot, the author buys his own balloon and then his learning curve really takes off. He advertises romantic flights for two and witnesses marriage proposals, consoles jilted suitors, and even helps to scatter ashes with some painfully embarrassing results. His usually gentle adventures will make you smile, and his final tale will bring a tear to your eye.

A Skylark in Blue Yonder can be obtained tax free direct from the publisher, Melrose Books at 44-(135)-364-6608 or

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Contact: David Farr
Marketing & Promotions Co-ordinator

Phone: 44-135-364-6608

By Jon Brownridge
£13.99 Hardcover 210 pages
ISBN 978-1-906050-30-6
Release : 2007

Ordering Information:
Phone: +44-135-364-6608

For review copies please e-mail marketing@melrosebooks .com

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Winning Essay:

Charging Into the Millennium!
Technology Will Change the Face of the Farm in the 21st Century
by Jason Brownridge, Georgetown, Ontario (Milton District High School)


The Ice Makers, Oil on Canvas, Image size: 24" x 36"

Ice Makers

On November 25, 2000, Canada House presented a solo exhibition for
Bill Brownridge titled "Ode to Winter".

William Roy Brownridge

Born in Rosetown, Saskatchewan, Bill Brownridge graduated from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and Art (now the Alberta College of Art) with a diploma in advertising art.

In 1975/76 he won a Canada Council grant to paint and draw the disappearing railroad architecture of the prairies.

He was commissioned in 1981 by the Calgary Olympic Development Association to render a series of serigraphs depicting the sporting events of the Olympic Winter Games. These works were used as a part of Calgary's winning presentation (both in print and film) to the International Olympic Committee for the 1988 Olympics.

Mr. Brownridge has participated in exhibitions with the Alberta Society of Artists, the Ontario Society of Artists, the Burnaby Print Show, the Young Contemporaries of Canada, the Red River Exhibition, the Calgary Exhibition and Stampede, the National Museum of Science and Technology in Ottawa, and Calgary's Glenbow Museum.

In 1993 Mr. Brownridge designed new uniforms for the NHL's Calgary Flames Hockey Team.

In 1995 he wrote and illustrated his first childrenís book "The Moccasin Goalie". It has been well received and is into its second printing edition.

His works are represented with many corporations and private collections, and in the homes of NHL players and coaches.