Backfire From Germany, joined Oct 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0 Posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 4045 times:
British Airways announced today the retirement of its
Concorde fleet of seven aircraft with effect from the end of October 2003.
The airline said that its decision had been made for commercial reasons with
passenger revenue falling steadily against a backdrop of rising maintenance
costs for the aircraft.
Detailed discussions over an extended period with Airbus, the aircraft's
manufacturer, confirmed the need for an enhanced maintenance programme in the
coming years, the carrier added.
British Airways has decided that such an investment cannot be justified in the
face of falling revenue caused by a global downturn in demand for all forms of
premium travel in the airline industry.
The downturn has had a negative impact on Concorde bookings and is set to
continue for the foreseeable future, according to the airline.
Rod Eddington, British Airways' chief executive, said: 'Concorde has served us
well and we are extremely proud to have flown this marvellous and unique
aircraft for the past 27 years.
'This is the end of a fantastic era in world aviation but bringing forward
Concorde's retirement is a prudent business decision at a time when we are
having to make difficult decisions right across the airline.'
Noel Forgeard, president and chief executive officer of Airbus, said: 'Airbus'
predecessors Aerospatiale and British Aircraft Corporation created Concorde some
40 years ago and we are proud of this remarkable achievement.
'But its maintenance regime is increasing fast with age. Thus, as an aircraft
manufacturer, we understand completely and respect the decision of British
Airways, especially in the present economic climate.
'It goes without saying that until the completion of the very last flight, we
will continue to support the airline so that the highest standards of
maintenance and safety are entirely fulfilled.'
Mr Eddington added that today's announcement is not a direct result of war in
He said: 'While the threat of war and resulting military conflict have had a
further impact on premium travel demand, the decision to retire Concorde has
been based on a long-term revenue and cost trend rather than recent events.
'I would like to place publicly on record my sincere thanks and appreciation to
all our staff, past and present, who have made the Concorde story one of the
most compelling in the history of commercial flight.
'Our pride in the aircraft will never wane and I am determined that we make its
final six months in the sky a time for celebration.'
Retiring Concorde will result in £84m write-off costs for the year ended March
The airline is already planning to make its Concordes available for the public
to view in museums.
To honour the past 30 years of supersonic travel, British Airways will announce
shortly a programme of special events and promotions for air travellers.
For the next few months, British Airways will continue to operate its Concorde
services between London Heathrow and New York JFK and seasonal services to
Jean Leloup From Canada, joined Apr 2001, 2109 posts, RR: 21 Reply 1, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 4011 times:
Well, at least now the speculation will be over. Is AF soon to follow suit?
My condolences to all the fine A.net members who work with, and dream of, this amazing plane. I am sad now that I will never get to see her fly, but I am sadder for our friends here who depend on this plane for their careers!
Could you please post what your source is for this article, Backfire?
Viscount From Gibraltar, joined Dec 1999, 112 posts, RR: 0 Reply 5, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 3924 times:
This is one of the saddest days in commercial aviation history. Let's hope that Mr Branson comes in to save the day and is allowed to purchase some of these majestic birds so that we may at least see them flying until the end of their useful service lives.
LMML 14/32 From Malta, joined Jan 2001, 2565 posts, RR: 6 Reply 6, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 3879 times:
It is indeed a sad day. In my humble opinion, as much as I respect Branson and his enterprising spirit, I think all Concordes should be retired with the dignity and distinction they deserve. I hardly think that BA or AF would even consider letting anyone else use Concorde. Not now. And I pray that it will never happen.
Planespotterx From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 7, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 3830 times:
I am saddened by the fact that concorde is to retire from service, but look on the brighter side, its been through oil crisis, war, a crash, 911, not many aircraft have lasted as long as this one did, and hopefully like the vulcan, there will be dedicated people who want to buy and fly the plane for public performances, or for NASA to use concorde as a test-bed like the TU-144 possibly??
Lets face facts, we knew concorde would retire soon, because of air fares, and bad events but lets look forward to the future, the new A380 is out soon, and we might have a long and distingushed career with that lovely aircraft.
I am saddened by concordes demise, but out of bad comes good, and even if she never flies again, we still have the plane on flight sim to fly
Skymonster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 8, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 3786 times:
Can't see Branson picking them up. Even if there was interest from the likes of Virgin, I can't see BA letting a competitor get hold of them. Eddington said on the radio this morning that he expects that they'll all go to museums - museum directors, put your requests in now if you haven't already!
Planespotterx From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 11, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 3689 times:
oh my god i realised maybe we at EGCC could get concorde, i hope we do, Concorde was a regular visitor at EGCC, and i hope we get one of the marvellous aircraft to put up on the new Static display area thats being proposed near to the viewing area, thatd be great if it does...
Skymonster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 13, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 3663 times:
I wonder what they will do with the concordes. It will be a sad sight to see them just being in a desert somewhere. I hope one of them ends up here at the museum of flight in Seattle
Already been said, above - Eddington at least has said they'll end up in museums. I believe that the Museum of Flight in Seattle has already been promised a Concorde, which would be excellent - a smack in the eye for Boeing who dismally failed to get their SST off the ground!
Joni From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 14, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 3654 times:
Sad to see that the Concorde is being withdrawn. But with the recent incidents and the crash near Paris it's understandable. Also, the Concorde wasn't exaclty an environmentally responsible design. They're sure to remain an _awesome_ sight in aviation museums for decades to come.
Supersonic commercial flight will probably have to wait for a new fuel - probably hydrogen - before we'll see it again. I hope that happens in my lifetime, and since I'm still in my twenties I think there's a fair chance of that happening.
Gordonroxburgh From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2000, 550 posts, RR: 21 Reply 19, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 5 hours ago) and read 3464 times:
What AF will do is stop flying JFK schedule servcie at the end of May.
What they will do if from May till October they will fly supersonic chater flights. Nobody wants to pay to go on a subsonic Concorde flight! (apart from a small number of positioning flights that people can pay a small amount to say they ahd flown on Concorde)
Hopefully BA will also have some spare a/c capcity to organise a UK tour.
Whisperingiant From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 65 posts, RR: 0 Reply 24, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 4 hours ago) and read 3378 times:
I've just sent the post below to "Have Your Say" on BBCi (Concorde's retirement is one of today's topics) but as they NEVER actually publish any comments I send them, I'll pop it on a.net too, as my personal tribute to Concorde!
" In 1977, the first full year of revenue service for Concorde, the type was still a regular visitor to the Oxfordshire skies on calibration and training runs. I will always rememember the day we heard a rumble overhead from our school playground and everyone shouted at once "It's CONCORDE!"
To think that we were only five years old and could identify it! The pride and excitement it generated (that was also the Queen's Silver Jubilee year of course!) was incredible.
As an enthusiast of British civil aircraft, I am just so saddened to know that now, I will never have the opportunity to fly on the king of them all. "
I'd like to add though:
- my dad's late uncle was an engineer on the original Concorde build programme, of which I am most proud (and so's Dad);
- people who have flown on Concorde have been kind to me: I have a complete Air France inflight pack (very expensively presented in a fabric briefcase) and a set of BA inflight materials such as menus and things from immediately after the Landor rebranding. I treasure them;
- I attended the last ever Brize Norton Airshow and was astounded at how beautifully Concorde handled at low speed and altitude; I treasure the memory.
Bye bye, beautiful British bird.
"So quiet, you can hear the fizz in your drink..."
25 Rick767: There was me planning to organise a Christmas shopping trip to New York this year for my partner and I on Concorde as a surprise... Unfortunately we o
26 Klaus: This is extremely sad news. Even though I understand the economical and environmental reasons, it will still be a profound loss for civil aviation. My
27 RayChuang: Now that Concorde will be retired, what will both AF and BA do to cater to premium passengers? Here's my guess: expect AF to offer upgraded A340-300's
28 Racko: Oh no I always dreamed of flying with the concorde, but it seems that I'll get the opportunity to catch a flight. But we'll always remember she as the
29 BestWestern: I would like to see an increased frequency - all 777 operation on LHR - JFK, giving improved schedules and increased capacity in F and C class, but ma
30 EGGD: It was my dream to fly on Concorde too, properly.. Now I can't forfill that, I feel kinda empty you know... Not on one of those 1 hour flights either,
31 Planespotterx: makes u wonder though, in the new edition of AIRLINER WORLD it has an article on Concorde, and what people think of the plane, even a bit on Mr Bannis
32 Backfire: i know its lost revenue, but its cheaper than carrying on and flying the plane But it's not cheaper than grounding it... BA isn't a charity. It's a bu
33 747-451: "....will both AF and BA do to cater to premium passengers..." In this economy (or lack of one!) will there be any "premium passengers" left? Though t
34 Stretch 8: Farewell beautiful Speedbird! I thought they would keep her flying until 2007 or so. Let's also offer our support the fellow A.net member GDB, who wor