On 26th of November 2003, the Concorde flew for the very last time. Due to a crash of a type on 25 July 2000, world economic effects arising from the 9/11 attacks and some other factors, operations ceased on 24 October 2003. The AÃƒÂ©rospatiale-BAC Concorde supersonic transport (SST) was the more successful of the only two supersonic passenger airliners which ever operated commercially. The Tupolev Tu-144, which looked almost alike, being the other.
The development programme was a product of an Anglo-French government treaty, with a total of 20 aircraft eventualy built. The costly development phase thus represented a substantial economic loss. Air France and British Airways were subsidised their governments to buy the aircraft by, while other sales were blocked by the 1973 oil crisis and competition from the Boeing 747. Nonetheless, the Concorde made large operating profits for British Airways for much of its service life.
First flown in 1969 Concorde service commenced in 1976 and continued for 27 years. It flew regular transatlantic flights from London Heathrow (British Airways) and Paris Charles de Gaulle (Air France) to New York JFK and Washington Dulles, flying these routes at record speeds, in under half the time of other airliners. Concorde also set many other records, including the official F.A.I. “Westbound Around The World” and “Eastbound Around the World” world air speed records.
Part of the Concorde devolpingprocess were a number of testmodels. This specific Concorde, the G-BBDG, used to finalis the Concord design before the other aircraft entered passenger service and certification prior to Concorde entering passenger service. The plane itself never entered passenger service and had the status semi-airworthiness. Eventually it was used for spare-parts and it was under consideration for scrapping many times, but it has always been found to be useful. Since 2006 it rests his days in the Brooklands museum. Here people can have a Concord Experience.
People can also have a Concord Experience in Scotland. The National Museum of Flight obtained in 2003 the Concorde Golf Bravo Oscar Alpha Alpha (G-BOAA). After restoration, it opened its hull for the public in 2004.
Concorde Experience, Concorde exhibition (2006)
AÃƒÂ©rospatiale-BAC Concorde, test model, G-BBDG, (1974-1981)
Brooklands Museum, Brooklands Road, Weybridge, Surrey, United Kingdom
Concorde Experience, Concorde exhibition (2004)
AÃƒÂ©rospatiale-BAC Concorde, G-BOAA
National Museum of Flight
East Lothian, Scotland
Picture placed with kind permission from Reg Mckenna (Whiskeymac) http://flickr.com/photos/whiskymac/1424469737/in/set-72157602124617623/ (‘WARNING – The video onboard has been known to make grown men shed a tear!’)
Brooklands Museum: http://www.brooklandsmuseum.com/aviation_history3.cfm
National Museum of Flight: http://www.nms.ac.uk/museumofflighthomepage.aspx