Bungee Jumping
Pioneer David Kirke
David Kirke
| Age 79

Bungee Jumping 1979

The world's first Bungee jump was made on 1st April 1979 (April Fool's day) from the 250ft Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England.

David Kirke 1979

David Kirke (born in 1945) was the first to jump of the bridge in top hat and tails and a bottle of champagne in hand followed by Simon Keeling. They used an elastic rope, known as a 'Bungee cord' (bungy or bungie) , to emulate and improve on a kind of urban vine jumping.
  • "[We used] elastic ropes used to catch jet fighters landing on aircraft carriers, so I thought it would be OK." David Kirke.

Dangerous Sports
David Kirke, Chris Baker of Bristol, Simon Keeling, Tim Hunt (brother of F1 champion racing driver James) and Alan Weston were members of the Oxford University Dangerous Sports Club who were dedicated to formal dress, abundant champagne, and imaginative stunts.
Clifton suspension bridge first bungy jump
Clifton suspension bridge first bungy jump

The jumpers, led by David Kirke, were arrested shortly after, but continued with jumps in the US from the Golden Gate and Royal Gorge bridges.
First Bungee jump 1979
First Bungee jump 1979

Tribal Beginnings
David Attenborough and a BBC film crew brought back footage of the "land divers" of Pentecost Island in Vanuatu, young men who jumped from tall wooden platforms with vines tied to their ankles as a test of their courage and passage into manhood.

David Kirke 1979 jump

Tags: Bristol Sport Bungy Bungee

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