In 1972, Peter Powell developed a steerable kite, using dual lines. Very early Peter Powell kites had spars made of ramin which were later replaced with aluminium tubing and later still by glass fibre spars. Originally they all came with clear plastic sails, though later blue, red and yellow sails became available. The kites came with a long, hollow polyethylene tail that was inflated by the wind. The tail added stability as well as looking good when performing stunts.
Peter Powell won the silver and gold diploma for his kite at the Exhibition of New Inventions and Techniques in Geneva in 1975. In 1976, the Peter Powell kite was elected toy of the year by the British Association of Toy Retailers.
Millions of kites were sold and flying steerable kites became a craze in the mid-70′s in the UK. The popularity of all types of multiple-line kite flying today can be attributed directly to Peter Powell’s development of a modern, dual line kite.Peter often took his kites around the country and sold them from the back of his car. In 1974 (approx) he was selling them on Paignton sea front. He advertised by simply flying the kites. Now his two sons, Mark and Paul, have produced an updated model of the world famous Original Stunt Kite, the MK3. It retains all the classic features of the original but with a modern twist, including Peter Powell handles, moulded from the hands of the legend himself! Also with stronger line, reinforced sail and a simpler way of attaching the Sky Streamer.Peter Powell and sons
Mark and Paul have worked tirelessly to ensure that the kite is top quality. Hundreds of hours have been spent flying the kite around the Cotswold hills, testing the kite to destruction and amending and tweaking its components to ensure it withstands mother nature’s extreme weather conditions. The kite has been tested in temperatures from zero to 30 degrees centigrade, in sleet and snow, full-blown gales and torrential rain and come out unscathed.
The Powell brothers first showed their father, Peter, the new kite model on the day the Olympic Torch came through Shurdington in Cheltenham. Peter was astonished and delighted at what they had achieved behind closed doors.
A further year has passed with more testing to ensure that they were making a kite suitable for a whole family to fly as the brothers’ vision is of creating a family kite rather than a Power kite.
When the news got out that the kites were coming back, we heard from Mark P in Nottingham whoes feelings seemed to echo the boys vision:
“I’m 37 now, but back in the 80s I spent many long hours flying my blue Peter Powell kite whilst on holls in Skegness with my family. I’d literally be out all day with it and maybe my boy will also enjoy flying this one when the time comes!”
Peter and his family regularly have hours of fun flying the new kite around the Devil’s Chimney on Cheltenham’s Leckhampton Hill whenever there is a bit of wind.
Paul and Mark had a dream, just like their dad so many years ago, that the Peter Powell Stunt Kite would make a come-back and now the dream has come true.
Peter and his family hope you get as much pleasure from flying your kite as they have had making it.
Happy flying – from the Powells!