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Dear Jill, I saw you a day before the start of the project on Trafalgar Square. You were giving an interview to a reporter but I still managed to approach you and speak to you for a while. Then I came back to see you standing on the plinth and managed to catch one of your balloons. I am a teacher from Prague and I decided to include my students into your charitable idea. The money we collected was sent to an organisation which supports orphaned students in India. Best wishes for the New Year and many greetings from Prague. Zuzana
Hi, I am an art student currently studying at Camberwell college of arts. I am writing my final year dissertation which involves researching Antony Gormley's 'One and other'. I am trying to contact a participant to ask them a few questions about there experience on the plinth. If you are willing to help me with my research I will be very thankful. If you understandably do not want to pass over your email address the questions could be answered via this site? Thank you for taking the time to read this. kind regards, Natasha.
Hi Gill. Wednesday was a day of mixed emotion - I really enjoyed meeting you and the other plinthers but feel sad knowing the plinth is empty again. Now I find myself going through the archive and just randomly viewing a plinther here and a plinther there. I think I appreciate it all the more now.
Unfortunately speech is not free; it costs money to use the computer I am typing on. I am producing a carbon footprint far larger a risk to all of us than the potential risk to marine life.

Due to the atmospheric pressure & wind direction on the day the balloons were released, I expect that a majority of the balloons ended up in the water at the duck island at the Park named after (the area where a leper hospital was built dedicated to) St James the Less.

The last time I looked, leather-back turtles & jellyfish were not considered to be waterfowl. The duck, geese, & swan population and/or the pelicans at the park would be affected though.

My youngest child had a party last weekend & a few balloons escaped on the way home. The coastguard didn't seem to care. Shame on them.


I can understand some of the environmental concerns here but can\'t see the point of raising them now, after the event.

It\'s clear that this was a \"one off\" event that will not be repeated, with a relatively small number of balloons that were made as environmentally friendly as possible.

Of course if there are people that think that even one balloon released is too many then you will be branded as petty killjoys and not be taken seriously, however powerful your arguments are.

I sugget you put more effort into the bigger picture rather than targeting small releases like this.
Just re-read my previous comment, and I should have put \'unnecessarily\', rather than \'for fun\' - of course I recognise it was done for a good cause. Thanks
Please see the Marine Conservation Society\'s leaflet on the damage that balloon releases can do to the environment:

Marine litter is a huge problem - and for those of us who try to reduce the number of plastic bags we use, it\'s quite disheartening to see huge numbers of balloons released just for fun. Thanks.
Ahh yes indeed, I see my commenst are still here and the discussion continues. There are a lot of flippant responses to my (and other peoples\') serious comments about environmental issues. The science is not flawed. In fact scientific evidence is growing about the truly damaging effect of balloon releases. I believe they should not be allow and are indeed banned in many parts of the world now.......try these links
google these words balloon release
or this
To \"concerned\".

If you can READ you can see that all of your comments are added to....think about it... really hard now....the \"Comments\" page ? It is clearly mentioned above.

The statistics and science you base your pathetic ramblings on are wholly flawed.

Read the other comments on the blog. Your statistics and \"science\" have been thoroughly the spirit of \"free speech\" of course.

Now,. apologies to Jill whose site this is, but, it is late so I won\'t mince my words. F**K off you pathetic twat !
To \"Brian\" and his two posts below.

On \"8th of July 2009 11:40\" you state that \"There is a high statistical chance that something like 30 of the balloons will end up in the sea ....\"

On \"8th of July 2009 11:43\" you state that \"there is a statistical probability that at least 20 will end up in the sea. ...\"

Do we suppose that by 11:49 there is no threat at all ?

Moron !
I suggest people read Jill\'s blog post from the 10th June before complaining about her balloon release:

\"In an attempt to refine my idea about releasing balloons I started looking around and found out there are quite a lot of rules to follow to protect the environment.

Only latex balloons, not metallic coloured or foil because they\'re not biodegradable. No valves, only hand-tied knots, and certainly no ribbons. If tags are used they should be made of recycled paper.\"

I think you did a fantastic job, and managed to highlight a broad range of charities.
Guys, be careful...

The last time \"polution\" and \"turtles\" mixed we ended up with four that were the teenage mutant ninja variety.

Still, they were all named after famous painters so I\'m sure Mr. Gormley would approve !!
Nice picture Mr Smith !

Given all the balloons in that I suppose the 60-odd realesed here were just...wait for it... \"A drop in the Ocean\" !!!!!!!
Hey, guys look at this one.

Get your hanky ready \"Stevie\"....
Jill, suggest you remove this part of your site - it\'s attracting idiots from all sides and it\'s detracting from the wonderful thing you did.

If people want \"free speach\" there are plenty of other platforms - where they will be ignored as well.
Can I suggest to the \"environmentalists\" here that they apply to go on the plinth themselves and voice their concerns?

It won\'t do them much good but neither will posting on this site. Still, I\'m sure it make them happy in some small way.
So all of these years going fishing and using worms and flies I\'ve got it wrong. I should have been using balloons!

Also, considering the amount of raw sewage pumped into the sea can you imagine all of the used condoms out there that may be a \"tasty snack\" for our marine friends.

Is there a turtle named after Marc Almond ?
If you read the web page from \"\" about balloon releases (mentioned below) you\'ll find it\'s the usual well-meaning but finger wagging publication that is high on emotion bur short on fact.

It is chockful of words and phrases like \"may\", \"possible\" and \"it is beleived\".

My favourite one... \"It is very difficult to prove that ingestion of a balloon has been the direct cause of death of a beached animal.\". And that\'s from the people WANTING to ban it !

As for the \"statistics\" - it\'s clear that the chances of any of these balloons causing any harm is minimal.

Leave her alone.
I notice that your last balloon was for the \"Cat\'s Protection League\".

How ironic of there is a cat out there in East London choking on it as we speak ! :-)

Still, I\'m sure that there are \"save the rat\" nutters out there who would be pleased !
I posted on here yesterday that balloons kill wildlife and my posting has been much for free speech.
I was watching the Forth Plinth yesterday and grew increasingly annoyed and angered by your hour there. I think the releasing of balloons was seriously ill-considered. In one of your blog entries you briefly mention some concern you had about the balloons reaching the sea but failed to follow through logically and not use them. There is a high statistical chance that something like 30 of the balloons will end up in the sea and of those some will inevitably without doubt cause the death of sea creatures such as leather-back turtles. These wonderful creatures can live to be over a hundred but due to the anatomy of their throat will choke and die when they try to eat a balloon could you be so stupid as to use balloons to raise money for sick people?
I was shocked seeing someone so silly as to release all those balloons yesterday on the plinth. Dont you know that balloons have a seriously bad impact on the environment. Many animals will mistakenly eat them and then die from starvation. I had tears in my eyes as I was watching. Your motives are admirable but I wish you could have thought of another way of doing it.
I think, in principle, what you have done is terrific. Charities need all the promotion they can get.

However, balloons cause so much environmental damage that I think it is a shame you chose to use this method to raise awareness when there are so many other ways to get charities in the limelight.

The Marine Conservation Society, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the Tidy Britain Group and the National Farmers Union share the view that balloon releases should not occur in the UK given the evidence for the harm that they cause to wildlife and the aesthetic damage to the environment.

Well done at donating to charity- but releasing balloons is a real problem for the environmentand and for marine life. Please please don\'t do it again!!
Well Jilly you made the big 60!! balloons that is :) You have raised a stunning amount for some fantastic charities WELL DONE. Hope to see you on the 6th to cheer on my good friend. Love Oona xxx
A great idea and a great website.
See you again on Monday when you take over the plinth from me.