These photos from an album c.1899 depict an attraction of those days, a ballooning exhibition, but one with an unhappy ending.
Born David Mahoney in Auckland, 1872, he was interested in ballooning from an early age, and went to England in 1892 to learn the profession. Later using the name Captain Lorraine began making public ascents, descending using a parachute attached to a trapeze making '...performances most daring...' Returning to New Zealand in 1897 as Captain Lorraine he began a tour of the country with his balloon 'Empress'. On Nov 2, 1899, Captain Lorraine made his last ascent from Lancaster Park, Christchurch. It appears from newspaper reports that the parachute became detached from the balloon and fell away, leaving the Captain rapidly gaining height and drifting over the Port Hills towards Sumner. Soon afterwards a signalman at the Port Levy station, 10 miles from Lyttleton, watched as the balloon, with the Captain aboard, fell onto the sea. A boat was sent from the station, and others joined the search, but there was no sign of the Captain. It was reported that he tried to swim ashore and was drowned.
Captain Lorraine was the first New Zealand born balloonist, and unfortunately the first New Zealander to die in an air accident.
The photos here are not from this last ascent, but I have been able to identify the location as Lancaster Park, and dating from the month before, 14 Oct, when the Captain dropped by parachute from 11,000ft.
To give you an idea of an performance this below is from the Evening Post, 5 Oct, 1899.