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Flame Members

Current Members

Photo of Barry

Barry Savell

The team leader, Barry Savell, flies at position #1 (usually on the right, viewed from behind) and is one of the founder members of the team.

Barry comes from Bath; now retired, he used to be a manager in a software company.

Barry also judges at STACK UK kite competitions and is currently STACK UK’s National Director.

Barry is married with two children - his son, Alex, has also been a former member of Flame.

Photo of Fran

Fran Burstall

At position #2 the other founder member, Fran Burstall, is also from Bath and is a Professor, researching Mathematics (geometric approaches to the study of non-linear equations) at Bath University.

He and his partner, Zoë, (who has also been a former member of Flame) have two children.

Photo of Vee

Vee Griffiths

The team’s most recent member Vee Griffiths, from Northamptonshire, joined the team late in 2017, flying at position #3.

Vee is a former nurse and production manager for an optical component manufacturer.

An avid kite flyer, Vee is also a member of Team Airheads, and has competed with her husband Keith as Pair Ex-Grads.

All the team members enjoy other aspects of kite flying such as freestyle and trick flying, and flying four line Revolution kites, though since being bitten by the team flying bug they don't have as much time for these anymore.

All of the team are members of STACK UK, some are also members of Avon Kite Flyers.

Former Members

Photo of Tony

Tony Shiggins

Tony Shiggins joined the team in 2007, flying at position #3, and was a full time member until 2017, competinmg in both 4 person and 3 person configurations. He has competed with Flame in 5 World Sport Kite Championships and 6 EuroCups (in France, The Netherlands, Italy and the UK). Tony and Fran also used to fly as a pair, Phoenix. Prior to joining Flame Tony was a former member of team Matrix Management (UK champions in 2004).

Tony is from Faringdon, and is an engineer working in structural vibration analysis for Honda.

Photo of Alex

Alex Savell

Alex Savell (Barry's son) joined the team in 2005. He helped develop the "Feelin' Good" ballet, and flew the #3 position in competition for 3 years, competing in two World Sport Kite Championships in the USA and France, and two EuroCups in France and Italy. In 2007 the team expanded to 4 members and in 2008 introduced a new 4 person "City of Delusion" ballet, with Alex taking the tail-gunner position (#4). He flew in this ballet at a World Sport Kite Championships and at two EuroCups in the Netherlands and the UK. University commitments meant he ceased full time involvement in the team at the end of 2008, but he did return for a EuroCup in Italy in 2011.

Alex is a post-graduate student researching physics at Imperial College, London. Though the youngest ever member of the team, Alex has been flying kites for many years, and competing for most of that time.

Photo of Zoë

Zoë Hancock

One of the founder members of the team, Zoë Hancock is Fran's partner. Zoë competed with the team from 1999 to 2002, competing in a EuroCup and the first ever World Sport Kite Championship. She also returned for a year in the four person configuration in 2010, competing in both a EuroCup and a World Sport Kite Championship.

Zoë has two children, Michael and Phoebe, which pretty much explains why she had to stop flying with the competition team! Zoë enjoys flying many types of kite, and makes her own single line kites - Zoë also made the team's large red and black Flame banner, and some of the team's clothing.

Photo of Ewan

Ewan Russell

Ewan joined Flame in 1999, and retired from competition and team flying at the end of 2004, having competed in EuroCup and 3 World Sport Kite Championships. Ewan also enjoys flying four line Revolution kites.

Guest Appearances

Occasionally, other kite flying friends have stepped in as substitutes at competitions or displays when one of Flame has been ill or injured, so a big thank you to Steve Hoath (of The Flying Squad), Robin Smith (of Scratch Bunnies) and Vee and Keith Griffiths (of Airheads).


And last, but by no means least, we should not forget the 'other halves' who put up with being abandoned for practice, and sit around on fields and beaches, often in cold winds, and help as ground crew when we compete and demonstrate. So a big thank you to Zoë Hancock, Sharon Savell (below) and Mary Anne Parker.

Photo of Sharon at EuroCup 2008